Vegetable Gardening for Newbies

If you would like to start a vegetable garden, but are unsure about where you should begin, don’t worry. What most people don’t know is that starting your own vegetable garden isn’t as difficult as you may think. Follow these simple guidelines to grow your own veggie garden brought to you by plant experts –

Starting Your Vegetable Garden

The first and most important step is to decide what veggies you want to grow and where you will grow them. A 4×5 foot plot is sufficient for veggies for one person. Since you have never gardened before though, you may wish to start with a smaller area until you get the hang of it.

If you are limited for space in your yard, or don’t have a garden where you live, you can grow your vegetables in planter boxes or containers. When you have worked out where to plant and what to grow, draw out your ideas on paper, and list which vegetables you would like, and where.

It is best to grow veggies which you enjoy as well as those that are easy to grow. Top choices for newbies include:

  • Carrots
  • Beets
  • Lettuce
  • Tomatoes
  • Beans
  • Radishes
  • Cucumbers
  • Squash

Once you have a list of vegetables, research each one to check that they are suitable for your area.

Choosing an Area for your Vegetable Garden

Once you have settled on the layout you want, look at your garden for a space where that layout will fit. Take note of wind direction, sunny and shady areas, trees, and ground moisture.

A successful vegetable garden needs five to eight hours of direct sunlight every day. If you have shrubs or trees in your yard, monitor how much shade they create. If you find that they block the sun for too much of the day, find a different location. Veggie gardens also need lots of water to grow. Place your garden in a wetter part of your yard near a water source.

Conditioning your Soil

Without preparing your soil properly, your vegetables may have difficulty growing. Fall is normally the best time to prepare your soil.

How to condition your soil:

  • Clear the bed of weeds, rocks, sticks, and other debris
  • Rake the surface until smooth
  • Use a tiller to work the soil
  • Work organic matter into the soil
  • Use compost or manure to add texture, drainage, and fertility to your soil

After the soil has been worked, you can begin planting your veggie garden.

Placing your Vegetables

Place the tallest crops at the back of your plot and work forward in descending height order. Plant your vegetables in rows from north to south with around 2 feet between each row.

Maintaining your Garden

Once your garden is planted, all that’s left is the general maintenance. This is an important and continuous step to ensure your vegetables thrive.

  • Water your garden at least once a week, more if you are having heat spells.
  • Remove weeds when they appear
  • Add mulch to retain moisture
  • Pick ripe fruit once harvesting season starts as this encourages production

Depending on the type and amount of vegetables you planted, you can easily preserve them by canning or freezing them. And don’t forget to enjoy your success as a new veggie gardener.