5 Steps to Starting your own Veggie Garden

Have you ever tried fresh picked vegetables from the garden?  There’s nothing quite like it, especially if you’ve grown them yourself.  Planning, planting and eating from your own garden is a rewarding experience and can be a lifelong hobby. 

1. Planning ahead. 

  • If you rent at a student house, make sure your landlord is okay if you start a veggie garden plot.  Using a pallet garden or raised garden box would save you from digging a plot in the backyard. 
  • If renting an apartment, don’t feel left out. You can use an upright pallet or garden box on your balcony. 
  • Will you be at this location in the spring, summer, and fall?  Some vegetables take a while before they are ready. 

2. Pick a location for your garden. 

  • The location of your garden is important as the wrong location could result in poor growth and subpar veggies. 
  • Pick a sunny location that gets at least 6 hours a day.  Very few veggies do well in the shade. 
  • Plant veggies in a well-drained area. A constantly wet area will rot the roots of the plant. 
  • Be sure that you can access a water source, whether a hose or watering can. 

3.  Garden Plot Size 

  • The most common beginner gardening mistake is planting too much.   
  • For reference, a garden that would be 10 ft long and 11 rows across would feed four people. 
  • Remember the bigger the garden the more weeding you have. 
  • A couple of planter boxes or pallet gardens would be a good starting point. 

 4.  Choosing your vegetables 

  • Pick vegetables that you enjoy eating 
  • If it’s your first time planting a garden choose vegetables that are easy to grow. 
  • 10 easy vegetables to grow are: peas, beans, tomatoes, beets, leaf lettuce, spinach, chard, zucchini, peppers. 
  • Some vegetables prefer cooler temperatures over hot and should be planted in early spring where others prefer warmer temperatures and should be planted later.
  • Cool temperature vegetables should be planted now. These include peas, spinach, lettuce, radishes 
  • Warmer temperature vegetables should be planted around May long weekend.  These include beans, zucchini, beets, chard, tomatoes, peppers, pumpkins. 

5.  Maintaining Vegetables 

  • Water regularly in hot summer months. 
  • Pick weeds around plants to ensure weeds aren’t taking plant’s food and water. 
  • Keep an eye out for bugs eating plants and check online for solutions to managing harmful ones. 
  • When the vegetable is ripe you could be picking everyday as certain varieties can mature quickly. 

Most of all have fun with the process and enjoy the fruits vegetables of your labour. 

Happy gardening!  

Your Friendly Neighbourhood Badger