Growing a successful vegetable garden is a great way to provide you and your family with a convenient and sustainable food source. With some planning and consideration, you can grow a bountiful harvest in your backyard with very little effort. Here, we’ll give you a few great tips okay but you do name that will kick your garden up a notch.
Plan before you plant
What you can grow will depend on how much space you have. A plant that has an area too small will overtake the entire garden, while a plant whose area is too large would be vulnerable to nature's snackers, like birds and deer.
Think about what you'd like the garden to produce for you and add a few extra plants on top of that. Herbs and flowers can fill the space while also providing benefits for you and your plants. You can provide climbing plants, like peas, with some structure by planting sunflowers next to them, and lettuce underneath for shade.
This system maximizes the use of space in your garden by allowing each plant to work together. You can also choose plants that attract specific insects that will eat away at destructive insects. Marigolds, calendulas and chamomile are all flowers that will draw in hoverflies and ladybugs to eat away at pests.
You can also research companion planting. Some plants grow well together because they give benefits to other plants. The most common example of this is the Three Sisters. This agricultural technique involves planting corn, beans and squash close together. Corn grows tall, allowing beans to climb, while the beans add valuable nitrogen to the soil, and squash blocks the establishment of weeds.
Native American tribes in America and Canada have used this method successfully for thousands of years to allow the three plants to thrive together. So many combinations of plants can be put together to benefit each other and allow you to worry less about your garden.
Grow what you know
If you decide on planting an entire garden of exotic fruits and vegetables, then be aware it might not go as planned. Researching your specific area will give you a good idea of what will thrive and what won't. You might be able to grow an orange tree in Wisconsin but it will take much more effort and care than it would in California.
If you’re growing in an area you’re familiar with then you’ll likely have a good idea of what does well. Try regrowing the same vegetables every year and adding in one or two that you might not know as much about. You might be surprised at how well they grow with the plants you already have.
Don’t be afraid to grow something new or a different variety of a plant you’ve grown already. If you’ve done well with heirloom tomatoes one year then add in some cherry tomatoes the following year. You might find out that you have a green thumb for certain plants but not so much with others.
Water by the weather
Gardeners are always at risk of overwatering their vegetable plots. If you water your garden when it needs it instead of relying on a strict schedule then you’ll see You can keep your plants healthy and moisturized by using good soil that holds water.
This is especially important in dry climates. It is recommended to plant in clay-rich soil since it is water-retentive. Squeeze a pinch of dirt between your fingers before you water. You likely don't need to water it immediately if it sticks together. You should also water your plants in the evening when the sun has gone down. By doing so, there is less chance of the water evaporating.
It is just as important where you water as when. Even though those leaves look dry and wilted, the only place water really needs to go is to the roots. Spraying the leaves has the potential to cause mold or even burn marks from the sun.
Something like that would destroy vegetables like lettuce and spinach that are mostly leafy. In addition, you should avoid watering from just one side but instead water the roots from all sides. You don't want one side of the plant to get most of the nutrition, so as you water it, make sure you are covering both sides of the root.
As a final tip, don't rely on the rain to water your garden. Overhanging trees can prevent the water from being distributed evenly. A good rain will soak the ground on top but that doesn't mean it’s given enough water to the roots to skip a few days. Use your finger as a dipstick to check how far the rain has soaked into the ground. Your plants will appreciate the extra attention
Get a head start
The trend of growing your own vegetables at home has become increasingly popular in recent years. Indoor gardens are small and easy to maintain. The products are marketed toward those who love gardening but are unable to do so during the winter. The seedlings can also be used by anyone who wants to create seedlings early and get an extra round of crops.
Several of these kits use a pod system where the plants are designed to grow in the pods, but a few allow you to either use your own seeds or take the plants out of the soil. Basically, these are small contained greenhouses that are easy to use and require very little setup.
It is important to know which plants can be replanted easily before creating some for transferring. Anything that is a root vegetable or a larger plant like a watermelon should be started outside. Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and tomatoes are all great plants to start inside.
Almost anything with a slow root development can likely be moved with no issues. Create a few starter plants to help you fill up your garden and extend your gardening enjoyment into the colder months.
Switch it up
Each planting season, make sure to switch your garden around. Plants might grow well in certain places, but that won't last forever. Within three to four years, the soil may have become depleted of specific nutrients that the plant requires to thrive.
It is also common for plants in the same plant family to be vulnerable to the same kinds of insects. You can be sure that aphids will return to your lettuce the following year if they thrive there for one year.
Planting tomatoes in a corner one year and a root vegetable in the same spot the following year confuses the insects and replenishes the soil. Using crop rotation has been used since the earliest known farms, and it's one of the easiest ways to keep your garden soil fertile and full of nutrients.
Making the most out of your garden is as simple as adjusting a few small things and planning for success. Taking the time to look into what’s going to grow the best for you will save you time, money and effort in the long run. A successful garden will last you year after year and provide you with some delicious gifts.