Have you always been fond of fresh, home-grown, organic vegetables but assumed it would require a ton of efforts to actually start growing some yourself? Well it definitely doesn’t. You’ll be surprised to find out that on a land of about 15 square foot, you can make a flourishing vegetable garden that can provide for a family of four throughout the year. With the right kind of planning and acquired knowledge you could go on to receive fresh bounties of your hand-grown veggies that are a hundred times better in taste and in quality than the grocery products you have been consuming all this while. Besides all the taste and nutrition benefits, gardening can be so much fun! After a long week of finishing deadlines in cubicles, unwinding in your garden can be extremely destressing and therapeutic.
- Getting Started
The most important thing to remember here is that you need to start out small. Most people make the mistake of reserving a whole lot of area for gardening of vegetables when they are just beginning. But they fail to maintain their own enthusiasm and garden for the rest of the year. You don’t want this to happen with you. You could also begin with container gardening and see how it turns out for you eventually. Other things to ponder over while narrowing a spot for your vegetable garden are:
- Welcome the Sun: While you are reserving spots for your veggies, always remember to allot the sunnier part of your garden to them. Complete sun exposure (6 hours) is required for a healthy, fresh bounty.
- High Winds? No Please: If you live in an area which is prone to high winds, you would want to avoid your garden having to bear its negative effects. Erect a hedge or a strong trellis that helps cut the wind speed for you garden.
- Water, Manure and Other Necessities Should Be Accessible: You cannot haul your water hose or watering can throughout the stretch of your yard. Choose a spot accordingly.
- Know What You Want
In vegetable gardening, you have to decide what vegetable is easy to grow plus what vegetable you would enjoy consuming. You don’t want to get abundant bounties of a specific vegetable that you hate eating. To make your job easier, here are a list of vegetables that are fairly easy to grow.
- Cody Leaf
- Wild Eggplant or Turkey Berries
- Salad Leaf
Besides what vegetable you choose from up above, you also want to be aware of how much each plant can produce. For instance, tomatoes, Cody leaves will be flowering all through the season so you don’t want more than 3-5 plants for a family of four. At the same time, radishes and Carrots give a single produce throughout the season. This is another factor to consider while planting seeds.
- Preparing the Soil
Soil is the foundation which directly determines the quality and health of your produce. Start preparing your soil since fall. First of all, check well your soil for any traces of weed growth, rocks, sticks, debris, pests or dried up moisture content. You would want wet loamy soil that allows the roots to breath. Work the soil well using a good garden tiller. After this, set up a mechanism for compost and drainage management. Nourish your soil with only organic manure. Sufficiently putrefied animal maul is an abundant source of essential nutrients for your plants. Adding a lot of mulch (1-2-inch-thick) besides providing nourishment, wages wars against weeds as well. Allow proper space between your crops and don’t overcrowd them at one place.
- Making Battles Against Insects and Pests Easy
If you add a lot of unrequired fertilizer to your soil, pests are bound to get attracted to your plants. Learn to use the right amount of compost and manure. Another thing you need to remember is to add a few plants that help keep insects at bay. Like marigolds, chrysanthemums garlic and onions. In case a leaf gets infected, cut it off (and throw in dustbin not in compost) to allow the plant to survive.
- Watering It Right Makes All the Difference
You need to carry out the perfect watering technique so as to ensure healthy growth of your veggies. The quantity of water reaching the roots should be optimal- not more than required, and not less. Always remember that you can eventually revive a dried-up plant but it is extremely tough to give life back to drowning roots. If you use a sprinkler, use it on the roots and not on the leaves of the plant. Water it early in the morning for best results.
- Rotation Is of Extreme Importance
If you plant the same vegetables in the same spot for a long period of time, your soil is going to get withered and unsuitable for flourishing plant growth. It is of extreme importance that you rotate the plants periodically from their spot. It helps the soil to revive itself of lost nutrients fairly quickly.
- Don’t Shy Away from Experimenting
If you are short on space, you could prepare your cucumbers, turkey berries or melons to grow along fences, mesh or trelliswork. Besides saving space, the aesthetic appeal of your garden also gets enhanced. Use of innovative objects such as barrels, baskets, furniture as containers, mixing and matching plants to bring out a pleasing variety, making vegetables as part of the landscape, vines, indoor hangings, balcony vegetable and flower garden and what not! When it comes to gardening, imagination is your limit.
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