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Growing a Vegetable Garden

Posted by MariaBBB | Added on : March 06, 2010 3:43pm | Viewed 1591 times | 0 Comments | This article is also in bushel basket and bushel basket


A back yard or some other plot near your home in full sunlight is the most convenient spot for a home vegetable garden. However, poor drainage, shallow soil, and shade from buildings or trees may mean the garden must be located in an area farther from the house.

Usually, the garden should be surrounded by a fence sufficiently high and close-woven to keep out dogs, rabbits, and other animals. The damage done by stray animals during a season or two can equal the cost of a fence. A fence also can serve as a trellis for beans, peas, tomatoes, and other crops that need support.

Fertile, deep, friable, well-drained soil is necessary for a successful garden. The exact type of soil is not so important as that it be well drained, well supplied with organic matter, retentive of moisture, and reasonably free of stones.

Good drainage of the soil is essential. The garden should be free of low places where water might stand after a heavy rain. Water from surrounding land should not drain into the garden, and there should be no danger of flooding by overflow from nearby streams.

Good air drainage is necessary to lessen the danger of damage by frost.

The garden should get the direct rays of the sun all day if possible. Some crops can tolerate partial shade, but no amount of fertilizer, water, or care can replace needed sunshine. Even where trees do not shade garden crops, tree roots may penetrate far into the soil and rob crops of moisture and plant food.

No one plan or arrangement for a garden can suit all conditions. Each gardener must plan to meet his own problem. Any great variation in the composition of the soil within the garden should be taken into consideration when deciding on where to plant various crops.

It is much better to give the garden a good soaking about once a week than to water it sparingly more often. Light sprinklings at frequent intervals do little, if any, good. The best way to apply water, when the soil and slope are suitable, is to run it the length of furrows between the rows until the soil is well soaked. If the soil is very sandy or the surface too irregular for the furrow method, sprinklers or porous irrigating hose must be used.

Weeds rob cultivated plants of water, nutrients, and light. Some weeds harbor diseases, insects, and nematodes that reinfest garden crops in succeeding years.

In small gardens, weeds can be controlled with black polyethylene mulch supplemented by hand weeding such as pulling, hoeing, and wheel hoeing. Mulching vegetable crops with organic material also is a common practice in small gardens.

Garden crops are subject to attack by a number of diseases and insects. Preventive measures are best, but if an attack occurs and the gardener is not familiar with the nematode, insect or disease and the proper treatment to protect his crop, he is advised to consult the county extension agent.



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