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If you are new to vegetable gardening, or have not had much success up to now, then these tips and advice may be just what you need!
WHAT HEALTHY CROPS NEED
The SOIL is the MOST IMPORTANT! This is the life-line for your crops. The essential nutrients that the plants need are in the soil.
Why is vegetable gardening such a favorite hobby? For one thing, there's nothing like the taste of freshly picked, home-grown vegetables. We also like to know, that what we are eating is providing us with the nutrients that our bodies need.
If the plants are depleted of nutrients, so are we!
This is why the soil is so important.
How to Grow Vegetables:
PREPARING THE SOIL
Garden Tips: Do this a few weeks before planting.
PLANNING THE GARDENING SPACE
Crops should be rotated each year. By rotating the crops you can help to discourage pests and diseases.
As the vegetables take in the nutrients from the soil, the source begins to get depleted. So to help promote healthy plants you need to give them "a little boost".
Fertilizer does the job. Not all fertilizers are alike. What's good for one crop may not be good for another. Know what you are getting. What we use and suggest is a general purpose fertilizer for vegetable gardening that will cover a large variety of crops.
If you really want to add the perfect nutrients into your soil, it can be done rather easily. You'll need to send a sample of soil to be tested so that the perfect balance can be specially made for your particular needs.
As I mentioned before, pests can be discouraged by rotating crops each year. There are also certain plants that when placed next to each other will also control pests. This is known as companion planting. There are many companion plants.
Even though you rotate crops and companion plant you may still need to use other methods to control pests. In this situation, organic controls are the best choice to use for vegetable gardening. Many are specific to the type of pest or plant.
CONTROL THE WEEDS
The biggest task of vegetable gardening! It is a necessity, to provide your young plant seedlings with a good, strong start. Eliminate weeds as they appear using a small weeder or hoe. Do this every few days if you want to keep ahead and prevent the weeds from stealing those nutrients!
Spreading mulch down will also help to prevent weeds and help to keep moisture in the soil.
GArden Tip: Grass clippings make a good mulch for this.
Water is essential for plants to grow healthy. Always water at the base of the plants, thoroughly soaking the ground. Avoid spraying water directly on the leaves. The leaves are susceptible to disease with excessive moisture.
SEEDS OR PLANTS
Seeds: The second most important thing is to use quality seeds.
It is best to purchase seeds from a reputable seed company. Among the best are Livingston Seeds.. Be sure to plant the seed according to the package recommendation. This includes the best time to plant, how many seeds to use, and how far to space them.
Plants: If you buy from a local nursery carefully inspect the plants. Leaves should look healthy without discoloration and not be root bound in the container. We like to use plants that we start from seed indoors.
Vegetable gardening requires devoted attention, but if you are willing to put in the time you'll be greatly rewarded when it comes to harvest time.
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