Vegetable Garden Rules of Thumb

Vegetable Garden Planting at Home

Growing a vegetable garden is one of the fun and rewarding ways to enjoy your yard at home. The utility and advantages of having a thriving vegetable garden can make them a better use of your space than traditional flower beds, or can work well in tandem with other gardens around your home. The appeal of growing a vegetable garden comes from enjoying the experience of agriculture in an urban setting.

Many of us have a fascination with rural living. There’s a certain appeal about living off the land, worrying only about good honest work and keeping your plants and animals healthy. This is not a great surprise, especially considering that until very recently, the vast majority of our ancestors all lived a similar life.

Although farming is now a very expensive and resource-consuming industry, it is still possible to enjoy the act of growing vegetables at home. By transforming part of your yard into a vegetable garden you can experience agriculture on a personal hands-on level while simultaneously providing a source of tasty and healthy food for you and your family to enjoy.

Important Things to Consider Before you Begin

As with any project, the planning phase is of the utmost importance. You should first size up your yard to determine available space for your vegetable garden. The back of the yard along a fence is often a good idea, as it can leave the yard nearer to your home free for a patio or other gardening projects. Draw up your plans on paper so you can always keep them handy to make quick adjustments.

The next thing you need to do is acquire certain supplies that will be instrumental in guiding your project towards success. The following tools are must-haves for planting a vegetable garden:

· Spade – Be sure to acquire a spade for easy digging of large holes, as well as for transfer of plants from one area to another. This is one of the most important tools you can have for your garden.

· Dirt rake – You will need one of these to break up the surface soil for easier digging. This can sort out rocks and agitate clay formations, making it easier to dig holes and plant your purchases.

· Tiller – You may wish to rent a garden tiller to help tear up the sod and break up the soil. This can save you a lot of work in the long run.

· Hand shovel – Little hand shovels are perfect for digging small holes and for “hilling” dirt around the base of plants for drainage purposes.

In addition to tools, you’ll need the following garden supplies:

· Topsoil – Mineral and vitamin-rich topsoil is prepared to help gardens grow in areas where the natural earth is poor or weak. A useful tip is to buy a bag or two more than you think you need, which can save you a trip to the store if you run out.

· Fertilizer – Natural fertilizers are best for a home vegetable garden. Farm-prepared manure is your optimal choice. Cow, pig and sheep manure should all be readily available at your local garden center.

Recommended Plants for New Gardeners

There are certain species of plant that are suitable for a new vegetable garden or for someone with little or no experience growing vegetables in the past. The following crops are a good staple for your beginner vegetable garden due to lack of maintenance required and a low tendency for pests to cause damage:

· Tomatoes – The tomato plant is one of the most popular agricultural plants in the world. These sturdy vines produce high crop yield and come in many different varieties. Consider cherry or grape tomatoes in addition to more standard varieties to produce something that goes great in salads.

When growing tomatoes in your vegetable garden, you may wish to use a wire ring basket to help guide their upwards growth. Driving a stake into the earth and tying mature plants to it can help prevent wind damage in storms.

· Potatoes – Potatoes are hardy root vegetables that grow underground. They are easy to breed in your vegetable garden and produce a high yield of crops for consumption.

· Lettuce – Lettuce is quick to grow, often being ready for harvest only three or for weeks after planting. It is also fairly hardy, and able to stand up to bad weather.

These three staples can get you on your way to having a great vegetable garden in no time at all. You may find that the following plants are also worthy additions to your vegetable garden:

· Peas
· Carrots
· Beans
· Cabbage
· Sweet potato
· Cauliflower
· Broccoli

Keeping the information presented in this article in mind can help make your vegetable garden a huge success. Promoting the healthy growth of the plants living in your vegetable garden will allow you to enjoy nature’s bounty as a reward for your hard work.

Copyright (c) 2008 Brant Florist

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