Just because you are inexperienced does not mean it is impossible. Sure, growing vegetables is a bit challenging at first, but what task isn’t?
The first thing you have to do is move away from skyscraping catches. Start small, try easy, and you will in no time fulfill the dream garden you thought was unattainable.
Besides, once you taste the homegrown vegetable, you would not want to keep the store-bought ones in the refrigerator anymore. However, to achieve such a reward, you will have to follow some vegetable gardening tips for beginners.
I am here to share them with you in the simplest form possible. We all once began from somewhere, after all!
1. Pick Easy; Pick Seasonal
Before you move on to the next part about vegetable gardening tips, stop for a second and think. Would it not be more sensible to decide what to plant instead of gathering all the garden tools and equipment?
This is where many get stuck. Some wish to go big while others cannot decide. I was once in this situation, so I can tell how infuriating it feels.
How do we resolve this issue? As common as it seems, you have to choose vegetables that are super easy to grow on the first attempt.
Now, most veggies grow once according to season. With that in mind, how about starting with potato, onions, squash, lettuce, etc.? If you want to go bold, adding beans, garlic, peppers, and beets to the list also tally about 90% success.
Do not just plant right away, though. Be patient and wait for the appropriate season. This way, you are less likely to face disaster.
The best way to keep track of the maturity length is by planting in spring or in fall. Healthy vegetables take some time to develop. Some grow within a couple of months, while others take as long as four.
If you have a hard time remembering different planting dates, record the details in a notebook as I do.
2. Adaptability to My Area
Even when you finalize the vegetables to plant for your garden, are they suitable in your region? The easy way to find out is by searching on the internet regarding the particular vegetable and its climate adaptability.
There is a reason why seasonal fruits/veggies are grown only during that particular time. A few examples include lettuces – quite delicious, but to plant them in the summer ruins the aftertaste.
Broccoli loves winter, but it is temperamental and bitter during summer! Similarly, watermelon is heat tolerant but cannot stand frosty weather at all.
Each vegetable has its own mood, and you should get acquainted with it before planting ahead of time.
So back to your area where you know the conditions better than anybody. See if the soil requires a higher pH level or already consists of the entailed amount. Most importantly, is your area cold or warm?
3. How Do I Choose the Location?
Never forget the fact that vegetables love and adore sunny days! Always select a location that receives about 6 to 7 hours of sunlight each day. It is one of the secret remedies to flourishing growth.
Any space facing South will do since the East or West side offers soft light that is not enough for growing vegetables. It would be more convenient if the location is closer to the watering source.
4. Beds or Containers?
Just because you do not own a grand backyard does not mean facing defeat. Get those unused large containers and start preparing the soil. Remember to use potting mix here for better drainage.
If you are one of the lucky ones to own a yard, always ready the soil in the beds according to the vegetable type. PH level compatibility is a crucial factor here. Dig or till the garden soil with a shoveling fork for faster operation.
As you can see, both options are quite convenient, depending on your living space.
5. How Many Do I Plant?
Let’s be realistic, how much vegetables do you eat each day? Even if you increase the amount by 10%, there is still a lot of leftovers!
Whether it is seeds or plants, think about the quantity of preservation you can keep up in the future. Instead of wasting so many ripened veggies, grow little of a different kind.
Let the family and friends take part in your accomplishment as well. Plus, choose to grow those that you love! This will give you an idea about how many to settle with for the next season.
Try to be consistent when watering the garden beds. It is better to soak them once instead of drenching them several times, even when the topsoil seems dry.
The best time to water is early in the morning. I often have to water again in the late evening during the summer. Press the soil an inch or two with a finger to check the moisture level before watering the second time.
What is the mulching gardeners keep talking about? Well, the kitchen scraps that you often throw out like fruit, veggie peels, or cuts are one form of mulch as well.
You can make your own mulches from decayed leaves, barks, animal manure, or wood chips too. But why should you use these? Mulching is another crucial step that protects the garden from weeds and dried roots.
Simply spread it around the plants, and you will notice the dramatic change in the soil during summer.
8. Composts for the Soil
Of course, nothing beats the amendments of soil by composts. The moment you see the soil is lacking nutrients, add composts. Again, the kitchen scraps come in handy here.
Whatever organic or inorganic materials you find that decomposes are the ideal composts for the veggies. They are not harmful at all, rather nurtures the roots with care.
So add them once in a while to improve the soil condition.
9. Wonders of the Fertilizers
While fertilizing the garden is tremendously helpful, choosing the wrong kind can be the end of everything. So to experience the action, you must figure out the type of fertilizer your vegetables require.
If the fertilizer you use delivers excellent growth but no sign of fruit, it is probably the wrong kind. Try to understand the NPK ratio given in each package.
Nitrogen is necessary, but too much of it can decrease production. Phosphorus and potassium should always have a proper ratio formulation to suit the plant development.
However, you should figure out how much of them your plants lack first.
10. Harvest Time!
The moment of wait is over! Before you harvest, take note of how many have ripened and what you are to do with them. Think ahead of time the portion you will preserve and cook/eat.
I once believed I could finish my bountiful reward without wasting any. Alas! It does not work that way. So as exciting as the occasion is, try to plan beforehand.
Enjoy and share with neighbors, family/friends what you have worked hard for! Be the source of their encouragement.
11. Go Vertical to Save Space
This option has become widely popular in urban areas where people secretly yearning for fresh veggies absolutely appreciate it. So do not worry about the little balcony in the corner.
It is sufficient to transform into a vertical veggie garden if you put your idea to it. Choose square containers that you can hang on the grills/railings. Or you can use that old, sturdy ladder as support.
All you have to remember is to plant veggies with potting soil, and the area must be sunny for the most part.
Do not be afraid of walking on the edge or getting out of your comfort zone. Let the children be your partners in these shenanigans. The whole family will love the addition of homegrown vegetables!
Also, be confident in what seeds you choose. If you fail on the first try, figure out why instead of giving up. You will be a pro gardener in no time.
Of course, do not forget to celebrate the first sprout visibility!