More often than not, the trickiest bit about tackling any new project is getting started. And starting your own veggie garden is no exception.
Planting and tending your own plot isn’t just a great way to save money, but it can also be the first important step to living a wonderfully greener lifestyle.
Below are our top tips for seeing you off tending to and eating from your very own vegetable garden.
Starting Smaller Is Better
There’s a great deal to be said for starting small when plotting your first vegetable garden.
Not only will this allow you to stick to a smaller start-up budget, but it will also act as a valuable learning curve. This will create the freedom to experience trial-and-error in a less cumbersome way.
Also, starting small will give you a good idea of the amount of time you’ll be required to invest in your new endeavour.
The perfect size for a beginner is a vegetable garden around 6×6 feet large. A good idea is to start by choosing 5 types of vegetables, and then to plant a few of each type of veggie.
For those extra short on space, growing veggies in containers can be a great way to get started.
Choosing What To Grow
The best way to choose what to grow is to grow whatever it is you enjoy eating. This will keep you inspired to tend and weed and water as you watch your veggies grow.
Important too when choosing which vegetables to grow is the actual size of the plant. Some vegetables require more space than others, some yield more vegetables than others, and some are better for extreme weather conditions than others.
Decide On “How Much”
Before even planting your fist batch of veggies, it is important to decide how much you and your family are likely to consume over the course of a season.
Also, for lower-intensity gardening, consider veggies like squash, tomatoes, and peppers. These are self-seeding and will keep yielding vegetables all season long – and without too much effort or input on your part.
A common mistake often made by beginners is that of planting too much when just starting out. Instead, do your planning, and you’re not likely to become overwhelmed or discouraged.
Choosing The Right Spot
When deciding where to plant your garden, two things must be kept in mind: the availability of sunlight and water.
Vegetables need varying degrees of sunlight to survive and thrive. Ideally, plants need at least 6 hours of direct sunlight without interference from trees, bushes, etc. For this reason, planting sun-loving varieties in the shade would be a recipe for failure.
The ideal situation is to pick a spot providing both shade and sunlight throughout the day.
Then, as far as water goes, the closer your veggie garden happens to be to a water source, the better. Regular watering is crucial especially during the first few weeks after planting.
Having a water source close at hand will make growing your baby plants easy.
It’s also important to save water wherever possible. Consider installing a drip irrigation system to help you manage your water use.