Vegetable Gardening Tips
If you were not already aware of the trend, more and more people are planting vegetable gardens at home. For many the appeal stems from the fact that vegetable gardens produce veggies that are much cheaper than those bought at a store. Many argue vegetables from a vegetable garden are healthier since you control pesticide use, and most say they even taste better when they are home-grown.
Vegetable gardening is really not that different than growing flowers in a typical garden. First of all you need to decide how big the garden you wish to plant will be. Next you select a place in your yard to plant it. You should choose a spot on your property that has good water drainage so that your garden is not drowned by heavy summer rains, a spot that is not too shady to allow plenty of sunshine, and a spot with good healthy soil. You should also surround your garden with a fencing of some sort since many types of animals will be naturally drawn to your garden.
It is essential before you even begin your planting that the the soil is properly prepared through cultivation and the application of organic material. Soil should be plowed to control weeds and to mix mulch into the soil. Mulching is a vital part of soil preparation since organic materials added to the soil during this process release nitrogen, minerals, and many other nutrients into the soil that plants need to thrive and grow.
Consider using a natural compost to feed your garden, a compost consists of waste materials like grass clippings and rotten foods which you can create yourself if you build a compost bin. The type and amount of fertilizer to use depends on the soil you have as well as the types of vegetables you wish to plant. Some plants have very specific needs like many leafy plants such as cabbage, spinach, and lettuce, which usually grow better with more nitrogen. While root crops like potatoes, beets, turnips, and carrots require more potash. Tomatoes and beans use a lot less fertilizer, while plants like onions, celery, and potatoes need a larger amount of fertilizer.
One thing vitally important in vegetable gardening is the gardens arrangement. No single solution will work for every garden, due of course to varying conditions. However, a popular method of arranging a vegetable garden is to plant vegetables needing limited space together with those that require more room together. It is generally advised to plant taller plants towards the back of the garden so that the sunlight is ample.
Weed control is even more vital in a vegetable garden since they will rapidly take up all the water, light, and nutrients meant for the vegetables. You can get rid of such weeds by cultivation and/or mulching. Natural mulches work best, and the most popular mulch is clean pine straw because it helps protect the garden from erosion, insects, and fluctuating temperature. Keep in mind you need to purchase pine straw that has been cleaned and dried so that you do not have even more weeds than you started with, pine straw straight out of the woods in your backyard is not a great idea.
The great thing about vegetable gardens is that they are not that expensive to start, and the taste of your very own home-grown vegetables definitely beats vegetables from the store. If you careful prepare your garden, you will enjoy many days of fresh produce. Just make sure to take the proper precautions when planting, and continue to keep up with the maintenance of your garden. Have a delicious summer!