Planning and designing your vegetable garden can be a lot of fun. It’s a good way to get through those winter months as well. There are several practical reasons for mapping out your garden in advance. It makes ordering your vegetable seeds more efficient because you know exactly what you want. It is important to make a note of what was planted and which vegetable seeds were used so that you can reference what worked well and what didn’t. It is important to minimize your garden pest problems and to switch plants that take different nutrients from the soil, rotating plants from one location to another each year.
Some vegetable seeds such as tomato seeds can be started indoors at least six to eight weeks before planting, whereas sunflower seeds can be planted directly into the ground as soon as the danger of frost is gone and the ground is warm. When planting young tomato plants, be sure to protect them for the first few weeks until they are established.
How to Plant a Vegetable Garden
Ideas for Designing Your Vegetable Garden
Check the vegetable seed packets for maturity dates of different plants that you want to cook and eat together. Perhaps you want zucchini, hot peppers, tomatoes and bell peppers maturing at the same time. One key part of planning is to factor in the height of plants. You want to grow them from the smallest, in the garden front, medium in the middle and tallest in the back. This approach will maximize your sun exposure and air/wind flow.
Certain plants thrive alongside of each other and make excellent companion plants, so this can be part of your plans for vegetable gardening also. Hot pepper do well alongside eggplant, tomato, okra, swiss chard, squash and cucumbers. They all are heavy feeders so give them plenty of fertilizer. A fish emulsion every two weeks, and spray with an Epson salt solution for an organic garden. Growing herbs as neighboring plants give you the added benefit of deterring many garden bugs. For easy access, plant them at the very front and in the garden corners.
Homegrown vegetables have a flavor rarely matched by those you buy, and even a small garden can produce enough to be well worthwhile. Succession planting of fast growing crops will add extra yield. Buy extra packets of seeds such as radish, shallots, lettuce, mustard greens and spinach and plant every two weeks, for a continual supply of fresh greens.
When planning your garden choose the location that has the most sun, measure it to find the exact dimensions, and make a diagram of it on which you can map out where you will plant each crop. It’s important to know when each vegetable should be planted, growing and harvest time. If you are new, pick up a gardening book that has vegetable gardening tips and information needed for a successful garden. You can even mix in a small herb garden to accompany your vegetables.
Every year gardeners all over the country experience the joy of planning, organizing and planting their vegetable and flower seeds. Planting a vegetable or flower seeds garden takes some time but is well worth the effort with the benefits your garden has to offer.
The following are some tips to assist you; select a site with full sunlight, good drainage and without shade; plan out how much you will plant, don’t worry if you only have enough space for a small garden; you can always plant vegetables in front of shrubbery, flower beds or in containers; deep well drained soil is necessary for success; mulching is recommended as it keeps the soil cool requiring less watering; organic fertilizers can be an advantage; equip yourself with good garden accessories such as a spade, bow rake, hoe, cord for laying out rows, wheelbarrow and garden hose.
You’ll be able to start planning your spring garden in the fall by selecting your garden accessories, flower bulbs, vegetable and flower seeds from free seed catalogs all over the country. The extra time you put into your garden is always worth the effort when you get to appreciate your efforts come spring, summer and fall.