Growing your own fruit and vegetables can seem like a great idea – until you get all the gear and realize that you actually have no clue what you’re doing! Edible gardening is a growing market (quite literally) that will save you money, give you more options, and save the planet while you’re at it. So, how do you get started? Take a look at how and where to plant a vegetable garden for beginners.
1. Make sure you choose your plot wisely
Choosing the right ground can make the difference between soggy mud, and flourishing fruit and vegetables. It is always best to choose the sunniest spot in your garden for your vegetable garden, as these conditions will give you stocky, sweet and healthy vegetables. However, it’s important to note that some fruits, like strawberries, do require shade. If so, just create a little netting over the plants, or even make them their own little fence.
2. Choose the right soil
When it comes to soil, you don’t have to go to the garden center and stock up on the latest mulch or tested soils. Normally, your own garden soil will be absolutely fine for your new vegetable garden. However, do take a look at it before you plant your seedlings. Do not plant in an area where the soil is too thin (i.e., if you can’t place a whole spade blade into the ground) or if the soil is riddled with stones.
3. Keeping the slimy things away
Slugs and snails can ruin your crops overnight. So it’s important to make sure you keep an eye on your vegetable garden to keep it clean and tidy, in order to avoid the wrath of these little slimy creatures. One way to rid your plot of slugs and snails is clear weeds and leaves away from your plants, as this is the perfect breeding and hiding ground for them. Also, avoid growing large flowers or bushes next to your plot. If you can, separate your plot and the rest of your garden with a path.
4. Don’t ignore the advice
When you buy your seed packets, never ignore what the instructions tell you to do. Always plant them when recommended – otherwise, you may have ruined your chances before you have even begun. Never plant the seeds BEFORE their designated planting season, but if you sow the seeds a little later than recommended, you may still see the results you were hoping for.
5. Create your own compost
Yes, it may sound disgusting, but creating your own compost is one of the best ways to ensure maximum growth from your crops! Rather than throwing away your vegetable peelings, plant pruning or lawn clippings, throw them onto a heap and wait for them to turn into compost. Then place it around your veggies and watch them flourish!
6. Build raised beds
This is not a necessity – but it could help. Building a raised bed with a wooden framing can improve drainage, ensure a designated plot area, lift the crops up and they are often more controllable. But this is all down to personal choice. It’s not too tricky to build a raised bed, as many garden centers will have packs of everything you need – and the all-important instructions to get it done. Good luck!