Growing your own vegetable garden at home has many benefits – it can supply you with the freshest ingredients, you will know exactly what chemicals – or lack thereof – that were involved in the growing of your crop, and it can create a platform for your child to help develop a green thumb. However, you may be a bit confused as to what sort of plants prosper in your region, how to grow and cultivate seedlings, and where to plant your growing plants.
Start Indoors. Growing your plants indoors will ensure that you protect them from frost, control the health of the soil, and prevent insects that may potentially kill your plants. You will have more control of your seeds, making sure that most of the seeds will yield a plant.
What Seeds Should I Plant?
You should consider the region and time of frost. In most temperate regions in the United States, tomatoes, most peppers, carrots, and beans do well when they are planted from January to April. For the cooler months before the danger of frost is imminent, cucumbers, peas, and garlic tend to do well. Some of the easier vegetables to grow from seed include:
- Radishes. They grow relatively quick, with most plants reaching maturity within a few months. Radishes are also particularly robust, growing in the spring and fall.
- Swiss Chards. Nutritionally dense, swiss chards are relatively low maintenance; growing in most soil types. Most swiss chard variants are also frost and heat resistant.
- Lettuce. One of the benefits of lettuce is that there are so many types for you to choose from. Most lettuce types require shade, making them the perfect vegetable to grow under taller plants.
- Green Beans. Most green beans, like string beans and lima beans, are easy to grow and quick to produce more seeds. Many are vine types, adding personality to gates and entryways.
Several Options To Growing Your Seeds Indoors
Many beginners start with simply planting their seeds in pots or seed trays – which is a viable method of planting your seeds. All you need is well-ventilated soil mixed with an organic compost, and some mulch to ensure that the soil does not dry out completely. However, jars and even hydroponics is an option for the appropriate plant and setup. These can add an accented piece to your living spaces by blending in with the decor.
Considerations When Transplanting To A Vegetable Garden
Planting indoors allows you to plant early in the season, ensuring a rigorous crop. However, the magic of starting indoors is that you can eventually transfer the plants to a plot of land, and have a sustainable vegetable garden.
Test the soil. Use a spade, and dig up 6-inch sections across various areas in your vegetable garden. Send this to be tested, or use a soil testing kit. You will then have a profile of your soil, including pH level, texture, and level of organic material. You will then be given instructions to make your soil more suitable for most vegetables.
Prevent Diseases. Prevention is key, ensuring that you do not have to deal with an ongoing infestation. Mildew and root rot are some of the more common ailments that hit vegetables – here’s how to prevent them from damaging your crop. Generally speaking, well-ventilated soil that isn’t over-watered will prevent most issues.
Harvesting From Your Vegetable Garden
The fun part of growing your plants is eventually harvesting your grown vegetables. There are arbitrary guidelines to harvesting vegetables. However, it is best to pluck vegetables as soon as they are ripe – this will sometimes encourage the plant to produce more vegetables.