Vegetable gardens are great in many ways. They are very rewarding, not complicated, and fun to take part in. The only big difference between growing flowers and vegetables is there is less room for mistakes with vegetables. With all of this in mind there are a few mistakes many people make, and a few steps people can take to growing a more successful garden.
Choose the Right Types- Some vegetables don’t grow well in all areas. Its best to do research before purchasing the seeds/saplings. Most gardening stores will only sell vegetables that grow in your specific climate. If you do plant something in your garden that does not grow as well in your climate, it is best to keep it away from your other vegetables because these plants are more likely to contact diseases or a fungus.
Prepare the Soil- Add in as much organic material as you can like compost, manure and worms. If you don’t use composted manure, also work in a complete fertilizer which will add levels of nitrogen. Adding this organic material will keep the plant healthy and the roots strong which are both very important.
Plant at Correct Times- Seed packets and sapling pots will usually give the proper time to plant. In some areas planting times are very small and you must hit them at the right time for a good harvest. In other areas, you can plant several times over the summer and have a longer harvest season.
Plant Properly- Plant seed at the proper depth and space, following directions on seed packets. For sapling pots read the directions to see how to plant. Most of them will require cutting off the bottom of the biodegradable pot for quicker growth. Maybe even add in organic material like rotting fruits/veggies or a dead fish or meat under the seeds or sapling pot to add more nutrients. Vegetables planted too closely together will be stressed and not produce a lot of product. Also, it is best to replant vegetables in the next season where there was a good previous harvest. You will already know that the vegetable grows well in that area, and the nutrients left behind from last year will help the new plant.
Pull Weeds- Weeds compete with vegetables for water, nutrients and sunlight, which will reduce the amount of vegetables grown. Pull weeds by hand or with a knife and make sure you get all the roots for the best outcome. If you dont want to deal with as many weeds it is a good idea to mulch your vegetable garden. The two to three inches of mulch will shield the fertile dirt from weed seeds, and make it tougher for small weeds to grow.
Fertilize Regularly- Maintaining growth is very important with almost all vegetables. Most should be fed with a nitrogen fertilizer at least every 4 to 6 weeks or use a vegetable dirt finalizer. Most garden stores will have a wide variety of fertilizer. Be careful not to over-fertilize, which can cause some vegetables, especially tomatoes, to produce less.
Water consistently- It is good to water consistently and keep the moisture in the dirt high, but don’t over-water. Water well, then give the soil time to dry partially before watering again. Inconsistent watering will harm most vegetables, and make others, like cucumbers and lettuce, taste bitter. Installing a drip irrigation system connected to an automatic timer works the best, but is complicated.
Harvest- Most vegetables will stop producing if not harvested frequently. Harvest once every few days. If you can’t eat all you gather, you can freeze them, pickle them, or share with friends and neighbors.
I hope these tips help you with your vegetable garden. If you have any tips, stories or just want to talk a little about your own garden please comment. Thank you for stopping by!