Your garden can be more than just a beautiful place to relax and enjoy the summer sun. It can also be a place that will provide you with fresh and organic food, which although challenging is also incredibly rewarding when you tuck into the fruits of your labour. Guest blogger Ella Andrews shares her tips for getting started with your own vegetable garden.
Where to Grow?
The success of your garden is not determined by the size, instead it is the location that matters. There are three basic requirements you need to follow:
Direct sunlight is a must for most vegetables. These greeneries need 6 to 8 hours of full sun each day - otherwise they will be more prone to diseases and insect attacks. Most importantly, your vegetables will not be as sweet and delicious as you might want them to be. Areas that receive less sunlight are appropriate for leafy plants such as lettuce and spinach, so don’t despair if you have a shady garden, just tailor your planting choices accordingly.
Prepare for a lot of watering, because vegetables are not very drought tolerant. Be sure that your garden is situated near a water source and invest in a handy watering can.
It’s not big surprise. After all, soil is the major source of nutrients for plants. Moisturized and well-drained land, rich in organic matter will ensure the perfect environment for your vegetables.
What to Grow?
It’s advisable to start small and don’t get too excited and plant more than you need. Consider the fact that some vegetables like peppers and tomatoes provide during the whole season, while radishes and carrots – only once. In this case variety over quantity is a winning strategy.
Once you start selecting what to grow you will stumble onto an infinite amount of possibilities. We are not talking only about the different vegetables, as each plant has more than one sort. Take tomatoes for instance. There are thousands of types of this delicious fruit out there. Feeling overwhelmed already? The trick is to select the right ones for your specific place. Are you going to plant directly in the ground or you will keep the plants in containers? Think whether you want/have room to initially grow your vegetables indoors. Keep in mind that, although it is not difficult, it requires some dedication. You should also consider getting vegetables that are typical for your region. These plants will be more resistant to disease and will adapt easily to the specific climate conditions.
Reviewing the seed catalogues is a great starting point. After narrowing your choice, pick a couple of varieties that seem promising to you. Then when you see the outcome, you will know what sort work best for you.
How to Plant?
This gardening method is appropriate for larger landscapes. You basically plant in a single row with a path in between, using mechanical equipment if appropriate. The disadvantage is that you will harvest fewer vegetables compared to the amount of used space.
This type of planting is ideal if you want to save space. You need to create thicker rows with fewer paths. The closer spacing will require weeding by hand. The planting is simple and quick, while the harvesting is pretty fast.
Article written by guest blogger Ella Andrews on behalf of: handygardeners in Putney