Veggie Gardening - How to Grow A Rich Vegetable Garden
This hub gives you a step-by-step guide to planting a vegetable garden. From how to get started to manuring and sowing seeds you will discover how to grow your own vegetables in your backyard.
When I was growing up I remember my Dad working away in the garden preparing the soil for his prized tomatoes and setting up the trellis so that the beans could climb up. Part of my duty as a garden helper was being the tomato deleafer; I had to do this otherwise Dad wouldn't let me pick the tomatoes when they were ripe, a job I enjoyed doing.
Growing your own vegetables is very rewarding especially as you know they haven't been sprayed with insecticides, picked young or endured forced growth. Lovely organically grown veggies.
Let's Start Gardening
The first step is to check your soil. If you are planting a window sill garden you will have the correct soil from your local garden center. If, on the other hand you are going to grow vegetables in your own garden then you should pick up a handful of dirt and squeeze it together. If the dirt crumbles and falls apart, you’re ready to start planting, but if it sticks together the soil is probably too wet to start planting.
The reason why I say that soil that is too wet is not good fo planting is because when the soil is too wet and you have planted seeds, when it finally dries out it will harden and an block the growth of your seeds.
It is best to wait for the ground to dry out, alternatively if the soil is naturally moist I recommend that you dig up the dirt and place it in a garbage bag until it dries out. When the soil has dried out replace the area that you dug up with it and then plant your seeds.
When you decide to plant a vegetable garden you are going to need a few essentials.
These are the supplies you will need.
- Small shovel
- Large shovel
- Watering can
- Seed markers
Buying & Storing Seeds
When buying seeds you should check that the variety is right for your garden.
Here sa few seed terms which may be helpful when you purchase your seeds.
Open-pollinated seed: Most of the varieties in catalogues are of thies conventional or standard type. No specialist hybrid-isation bas been carried out and so it is generally more economic.
F1 Hybrid Seed: A variety produced by the careful crossing of two pure-bred parents. Increased vigour and uniformity of height and shape are the main characteristics.
Pelleted Seed: Seed coated with clay or other material to make handling easier. This is useful for tiny seeds as you can sown them at wide enough intervals so as to cut out or eliminate the need for thnning.
Dressed Seed: Seed which has been coated with fungicide before packing by the nurseryman.
Vacuum-packed: Seed which has been sealed foil sachets before being placed in the package.
Chitted Seed: Seed which has been germinated by the grower and sent out in waterproof sachets. Such seed must be planted immediately.
Saved Seed: Some seed is usually left over aftger sowing. Nearly all varieties can be saved for the next year.
Home-grown seed: It is tempting to save seed from vegetables which have been left to form pods or seed heads. But this is not advisable.
Tightly close opened packages and place in a jar with a secrew top. Close the top securely and state varieties state varieties and date on the label. Place the container in a cool, dry and dark place. NB: Do not attempt to store opened packets of pelleted seed nor dressed seed from one year to the next.
Planting Your Vegetables
The soil is the foundation of every garden and so the first step to take is to rake through it, removing rocks, debris, and anything that might hinder the growth process.
Condition your soil with a good fertilizer suitable for what you intend to plant. This will help your new plants grow but be careful not to over fertilize. Simply follow the directions and only add the amount of fertilizer the gardening expert recommends.
Next, plan where you want each crop to grow. Take a sheet of paper and draw a sketch of your garden and the diffrent sections you that you know exactly where every vegetable seed you've bought will go.
Now that you know where you are going to put everything, dig some trenches. You should dig during a dry spell, and ensure that the trench is about 1 1/2ft wide and 1 spit (spade-depth) deep.
Spread the compost over the surface of the area to be enriched and dig the plot over. Remember to leave enough room to walk through the rows so as to avoid stepping on any of your plants.
Before sowing the seeds you must measure the appropriate distance (as per the directions on the seed packet) for each variety of seed to be put into the ground. This aspect of planting seeds is important because if you plant them too close to the surface or too deep in the ground it can potentially kill the plan.
Mark out the rows with the ruler and with a stick, trowel or the edge of a hoe draw out the drill to the delpth recommended for the vegetable to be sown. Next, with the seed marker, mark what row you’re planting then drop your seeds into the holes. Gently cover the seeds by replacing the soil with the back of a rake and pat down gently.
Using your watering can lightly water your freshly planted seeds. Do not over water as you do not want the dirt to become water logged as too much water can kill your plants.
Watering: Now that you have marked out the location of your seeds, you should be be able to keep track of which ones need more water and which ones need less.
Weeding: Weeds can remove nutrients from the soil your vegetables are growing in, so as soon as you see any you should pull them out right away, but be careful not to tug at your new plants.
Waiting: When growing a vegetable garden you have to be patient as your seedlings are not going to sprout up out of the soil overnight! But the wait will be worth it when you reap a bountiful harvest.