How to Start a Vegetable Garden from Scratch?
The idea of setting up your veggie garden is the best. The home garden gives you the best nutrition as it is safe from any chemical fertilizers and with the benefit of saving money by buying less from the grocery store.
If you have a backyard or even a small outdoor area, gardening is not a big thing for you. Come and learn the basics of how to start a vegetable garden with knowledge of types of soil, raw material,
Starting a vegetable garden
Choosing a site
The first step in how to start a vegetable garden is choosing a good garden site. If you are a beginner gardener, start small. Take a little time and observe the sunrays around your yard. Sunlight is the most vital thing in gardening. Remember to choose a spot with good sunlight.
Start with plants that are easy to grow and don’t require a considerable commitment. A 6 by 6 feet lawn or backyard is efficient for beginners. Just sketch out the area to get an idea of the number of seed packets or plants to buy.
Preparation of soil –
Moving on with how to start a vegetable garden, the second step is preparing the soil.
Your vegetables require rich and healthy soil with maximum nutrition. Too much sand, powder or slit, or wet soil will degrade the quality. The combination of these three in appropriate proportions determines the texture of your garden soil.
Steps to prepare-
- The first thing to do is use a spading fork or shovel to dig and loosen the soil and break up large chunks of dirt.
- Clean your garden area and remove grass, weeds, rocks, roots, and other debris.
- After leveling up the soil, determine the texture of soil for further addition of organic matter.
- Spread any organic amendments like compost or manure. Avoid stepping on the freshly plowed soil. Then rake the surface smooth and water thoroughly. Leave for a few days to settle the soil.
Sandy soil is made from large particles, allowing water and nutrients to pass through it quickly. Adding compost or any other organic matter will fill the space between the soil particles and helps in holding the moisture and nutrients.
Clay soil has small and densely packed particles. It holds the moisture but fails in passing air space for plant roots. Leaf compost or leaf mold is an excellent amendment for clay soil.
How to plant a vegetable garden?
Container Garden –
The next crucial step in how to start a vegetable garden is planning your vegetable garden layout.
If you have limited space and hate using raised beds, go for a container garden. Drill 10-15 inches holes in the bottom of the bucket(5-6 gallon bucket), fill it with 2 inches of gravel, and top it with planting soil. Sow the seeds or the plant in each bucket.
Remember, sunlight is crucial for the growth of the plant. If your plants don’t get 6-8 hours of sunlight at a particular spot, move your container garden around the yard to follow the sun.
Backyard Garden –
If you have enough space, use a trowel to make holes in the soil for sowing the seeds/plants. Keep a distance of about 2-3 feet apart to let them have enough space for nutrition, sunlight, and air circulation.
Sow the seeds or put the plants in the holes and cover them with soil. Gently press the soil, and avoid burying them too deep. If you are planting tomatoes or beans, add stakes or trellises to support them.
Water the plants or seeds to let them settle in. After the soil is dry1/2 inch below the surface, water them again. If you want to skip the hard work of watering them regularly, add a drip irrigation system or soaker hoses to your garden. Put a timer and let it do the work for you. Avoid it in the rainy season.
Make sure not to walk around in your vegetable garden and add organic fertilizers, compost, or manure as per the label.
What should I plant in my garden?
The next step in how to start a vegetable garden is choosing the appropriate vegetables. The best vegetables to grow are the ones your family will eat and enjoy. Ask everyone about their favorite vegetable and sort out the best one.
So, should start your vegetable garden with seeds or plants? Start by sowing seeds indoors 6-8 weeks before the season. Move your seedlings into the garden later, as directed on the seed packet.
Be Picky About Varieties
Paying attention to the description of the seed packet is crucial step in how to start a vegetable garden. Every vegetable comes with specific characteristics. Some are small and ideal for containers, while others offer better disease resistance. Start by choosing veggies you like to eat, then look into their sizes and care needs.
Always have a rough estimate of the amount you and your family need. Be realistic about how many seeds or plants you need to sow.
Vegetables like tomatoes, peppers, and squash keep providing throughout the season, so you may not need many plants to serve your needs. Other vegetables, such as corns, carrots, and radishes, are harvested only once and then need to be replanted.
The best way to enjoy vegetables through the years is by planting both cool and warm weather vegetables.
Grow lettuce, arugula, radish, carrot, and broccoli, in the spring season. After you’ve harvested your cool-weather crops, plant hot-weather vegetables such as tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, and herbs. Potatoes, cabbage, and kale are best for the fall season.
Tips on how to start a vegetable garden
Tall plants grow well on the north side of the garden. Peas, cucumbers, beans, etc., need vertical support. You can make your own A-frame trellis.
Raised garden beds are best if the soil quality is poor. Build the raised beds on the exciting lawn by lining the bottom of frames with layers of newspapers and cardboards and then filling it with soil.