A home vegetable garden is ideal for anyone who loves fresh vegetables.
About a Home Vegetable Garden
Pick a spot in your yard for your garden. Size depends on how many different types of plants you want to grow. You can plant a ground-level garden or a raised bed garden depending on your landscape, times of frost and the length of time you want to grow your vegetables. Ensure your garden plot will have enough sunlight to support your vegetables. A home vegetable garden will only need one to three plants to feed a family of four. Choose vegetables according to your family’s taste. Flowers and vegetables should be indigenous, or native, to your climate or able to be accommodated with extra fertilizers and water. Perennial flowers are important to your home vegetable garden because they attract healthy insects, like bees and butterflies, while flowers, including marigolds, repel insects you do not want, like aphids. Assemble the tools you will need:
- Tiller or garden rake and shovel
- Seeds or seedlings or adult plants
- Trickle hose or small, perforated water pipe
- Mulch material
Basics of a Home Vegetable Garden
The best method for preparation is tilling your soil to create an oxygen/nitrogen rich environment which allows water to seep into the soil. If you are going to use a garden rake, be sure to till the soil at least a foot deep. Till in manure, potting soil, river silt or peat if your soil is poor. Mound rows to allow excess moisture to run off from vegetables to prevent root-rot. Flatten the tops of rows encourage straight stem growth. Keep your adult plants from crowding by planting seedlings the proper distance apart. Add mulch around plants with newspapers, dried leaves and/or straw. Avoid pine mulch because insects and fungus in the mulch will harm your vegetables. Irrigate with a trickle or gray-water method to ensure adequate moisture and get the most out of your mulch. Harvest crops and prune plants regularly to lengthen the growing cycle and increase yield. Fertilize soil as necessary to keep plants healthy and productive.
For your Home Vegetable Garden
Once planted, your garden will need a little care every other day. Keep your vegetable garden hydrated. Trickle hoses are the best choice because they do not wash away much soil. If you are unsure how much to water, buy a hydrometer (water meter) from your nursery or DIY center. Fertilize according to your soil conditions. Learn what pH your vegetables prefer to produce the most fruit. Prune dead leaves and spoiled vegetables as soon as you see them. Keep insects off of your plants. Pesticides are a last resort when other natural methods fail. Consult your nursery for advice if you choose to use pesticide. Harvest vegetables as soon as they are ripe. Picking your vegetables before the plant goes to seed keeps it producing. If you have a prodigious plant, you may need to harvest it daily. Success in your home vegetable garden is easy as ABC.