Chuck E Davis asked:
Beginner vegetable gardening can seem like a daunting task.
Where do you start?
First you need to decide where to plant a vegetable garden. If you have property to grow on, no problem and even if all you have is a deck or a patio, this is not really a problem either.
By far one of the best methods for beginner vegetable gardening is raised bed gardening. Raised beds are above ground level and therefore can be easily adapted to the deck or patio to grow some wonderful vegetable crops.
Choose an area that gets a good amount of sun, but even if you don’t get a lot of sun, don’t worry, as you can still be successful. Mark out where you are going to put your vegetable beds. A square area works better than a long rectangular one. You can make your beds but using 2″ by 12″ boards of the desired length to meet with your garden bed size. Screw them together and you have your bed. Do not use treated wood to make a vegetable garden as the chemicals used to treat the wood will leach into your food.
If you haven’t already, you will need to begin to compost. Composting will produce nutrient rich soil which is essential for your plants. You can get plans online to build a composter bin, purchase a couple of readymade ones and there is even a compact composter you can buy to put under your kitchen sink in an apartment.
Until you produce your own composted soil, your beginner vegetable garden will need to use a good composted soil mix. Steer manure based soils are great as they are not too alkaline and are safe. Try to look for and use organic mixes. Also, before you put your soil in, it is a good idea to cover the bottom of the boxes with straw, hay or even better, alfalfa. This will give your soil good drainage as well as give it a proper base with which to start.
Once you begin to fill your beds, make sure you leave a path where you can get to the vegetables if you walk down the middle of the garden. Try to make the plants no further than 3 feet away from where you can safely walk so you will be able to reach them.
Now you are ready to take an exciting step in beginner vegetable gardening, planting. A good choice is starting with seedlings. Seedlings have a head start in life and will quickly spread their roots and take hold. Plant fairly close together but not so close they will be choking each other out. Also, plant the various vegetables right next to each other. The less room between the plants, the less space for weeds to take hold and grow. This can greatly reduce your work and makes beginner vegetable gardening more enjoyable.
Water your garden well throughout the season and watch as the miracle of growth happens before your eyes.
Nothing is more exciting as when you feel the satisfaction and reward of harvesting food you grew yourself.