To me, pretty flowers are fantastic, but almost everything in life should have a function. That is where vegetables come into play. I started growing a herb garden when I was in chef’s school with quite a bit of success and it wasn’t long before I had a thriving garden full of herbs.
It was much cheaper than going to shop every time you wanted to make pesto and a lot more convenient to pick a stalk of rosemary or mint to add to your meal. Starting your own home vegetable garden is even more fun!
Why and How to Plant Vegetables
Growing your own vegetables is a whole learning process. I suggest you don't give up too soon if you don't get what you want. Rome wasn't built in a day!...as the saying goes.
Organic vegetables are the talk of the town these days. Some people think it’s just a fad that will pass, but who really enjoys eating tiny fruit or vegetables that are overpriced. It’s a little ironic when you are trying to be healthy, but your freshly bought lettuce has been preserved with chemicals. Vegetables grown from home have a taste unlike that bought from any supermarket. It, therefore makes sense growing organic vegetables
Vegetable Garden Planning
Some people are more precise than others when it comes to vegetable garden planning. It all depends on what you want to plant, if you want to go organic, if you want to plant companion plants or if you just want a garden that looks pretty.
It is important to rotate your vegetables so that they don’t always stay in the same spot. Some vegetables take large amounts of nitrogen from the soil and others are able to absorb it from the air.
Using compost and manure will help, except with the case of carrots and parsnips where it is not a good idea to use manure because the roots become forked.
Grow a Vegetable Garden from Seed
Practically all vegetables are grown from seeds. You can go to your local nursery and buy already grown seeds, but it is better to do it yourself. Make sure the soil is firm. You can rake it or walk up and down on the soil. The best time for sowing is around Autumn and then you can plan for the year ahead, but it is also possible to plant different vegetables at other times of the year.
Sow your seeds in a straight line, referred to as a drill. It’s important not to plant your seeds to deep. Most seeds only need to be sown about 2 cm below the surface. Space your plants evenly with some space between so that the roots don’t get tangled together.
Be sure not to plant too much of the same vegetable otherwise it will be difficult to manage. A better option would be to have a greater variety, sowing less but more often. Some vegetables can be planted every 3 weeks such as lettuce and spinach. Many vegetables can be frozen which is helpful.
Vegetable Garden Design
Most people say their garden is not big enough, but you can find a space in almost every garden. A garden 30ft. X 10ft is more than sufficient enough to provide for your family with at variety of different kinds of vegetables. You can also use pots. The most important factor is that your vegetables get enough sun.
Vegetables that can take a semi-shaded spot. A few of these would be lettuce, beans, brussel sprouts, peas, lettuce or any other type of leafy vegetable. The rule of thumb is that vegetables that need to be picked need more sunlight, whilst those with more leaves like lettuce like lettuce can survive with some shade.
What Vegetables and When to Plant
- Brussel Sprouts, Cauli flower, Broccoli, Cabbage
- Onions, Garlic
- Pumpkin, Butternut
- Beetroot, Parsnip
- Peas, Broad Beans
- Beetroots, Spinach and Carrots
Easy to grow vegetables for beginners to plant
It’s not a good idea to start growing something like a potato which is more difficult to grow. As someone who has never planted anything before because you may get disappointed if your crops don’t work out and pack it in. It’s best to start something that is a lot easier and from there you can progress.
Lettuce, beans, tomatoes, beets, squash or garlic.
Grow Garlic to Get Rid of Pests
Garlic is one herb that is special in many ways. When we speak about garlic we always tend to hit on the odor point of view. Some people avoid eating too much garlic because of the smell it leaves, but I have to add this is only raw garlic. Usually if you cook garlic you won't smell a thing.
A lot of people can't go without this particular herb. It's the first thing they add to their pan with a little olive oil before adding the rest of the vegetables. Others don't worry what raw garlic does to their breath.
But there is another amazing benefit, besides flavor when it comes to garlic. Companion vegetable planting is a good thing to do when you are growing vegetables such as lettuce, cabbage, corn and other vegetables that are likely to be attacked by the old aphid or caterpillar. By planting garlic with a couple of marigolds in your home grown vegetable garden you will prevent the corn vegetable and the rest of the green leafy vegetables that the worms love from being eaten.
The reason people plant garlic as a means of companion vegetable planting is that the pests don't enjoy the smell of the garlic so you won't notice after you have first planted the herb, but as it matures and the bulb grows caterpillars will start to move in the opposite direction.
Planting garlic is also very economical because you only need one clove to produce about 12 bulbs.