Gardening is a great way to relieve stress and to switch to a more organic lifestyle.
It can be very exciting to see your first plants popping up and eventually turning into tiny bulbs of vegetables.
If you’ve never gardened before, you might be tempted to run to the nearest store and buy a ton of dirt, seeds, and fertilizer. Our advice: don’t do it!
There are a lot of cheaper ways of starting a garden and as it develops, you can then decide on how much you want to spend in order to make it function properly.
Here are a few ideas which might come in handy one day you decide to start a home garden:
Step 1: Availability of sun
The first thing that you should do is look at the availability of sun in your yard. Where exactly do you get the most sun?
Your garden might not need 8 hours of sun a day, so a shady garden will work just as well.
In fact, take note of the following tidbit:
- A lot of vegetables thrive in the shade with only 3 hours of sun a day.
- Vegetables that grow well in the shade include salad greens, broccoli, cauliflower, peas, beets, Brussels sprouts, radishes, Swiss chard, leafy greens and beans.
- Tomatoes, potatoes, eggplants, peppers, squash and corn, on the other hand, thrive in sunlight.
And please, start these seeds yourself – you will save yourself a lot of money!
Step 2: Look at your space
You don’t need a lot of space to grow a garden, so if you have limited space, that is totally fine.
You can then consider one of two options:
- Container gardening: plant your veggies in containers. Simple!
You don’t have to use fancy terracotta pots for this. You can use chipped teapots, vintage oil cans, and other containers that you can pick up at flea markets. Put them on your patio, and Bob’s your uncle!
- Vertical gardening: instead of planting a garden out, plant a garden up.
Attach rain gutters to the side of your house and plant shallow crops like lettuce and herbs. You can also use canvas shoe hangers or build outdoor shelving.
Of course, if you do have the space available, you can then be as creative with your garden as you want to be.
So, plant your vegetables straight in the garden, but remember to till the soil before you do so!
You will probably have to invest in a fence of some sort to keep pets and other animals out of your garden.
Step 3: Consider watering needs
Is your garden easily accessed by the water hose?
If it’s not, you will need to analyze the situation and make a plan.
A rainwater tank works well if you want to save water and direct it towards the garden in those dry summer months.
And if that’s not an option, you may want to look into some sort of automated irrigation system!
Step 4: Plant your garden
Once you have:
(1) analyzed the sunlight in your garden,
(2) measured your spacing and
(3) sorted out your watering system, it is finally time to plant!
Make sure that your plant gets a lot of water before you plant it — this wets the root ball and prevents the plant from going into shock when you transplant them!
As a rule of thumb, your garden will likely need water about twice a week, but all of this depends on how much rain you locally get and what you end up planting!
In other words, research the plants that you are growing so that you can water them appropriately.
On a closing note, it is better to water your plants in the early morning or later in the evening. Watering them in the afternoon might actually burn the plants.
And before you know it, you’ll be on your way to a happy, organic garden; one that not only you will be proud of but any future owner!
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