Have you been thinking of starting your own vegetable garden? There are many benefits to gardening, both mental, emotional and physical, plus your family will save money on grocery bills! Spring is the time to plant your garden, so here are some tips to get you started.
Decide How Much You Want to Grow
Do you have a large family of vegetable eaters? Or are you just trying to feed yourself? Determine what you want to grow and how much. Some plants are easier to grow than others, so start with simple plants such as tomatoes, lettuce or potatoes.
Soils, Seeds, Sun and Space
Once you know what you are going to grow, you need to make sure you have the seeds, soil, sun and space to get started! Most vegetables need a minimum of 6-8 hours of sun to grow. Luckily, enough sun isn’t a problem in St. George. Since we live in a desert, you need to make sure your plants get enough water. Having good quality soil that can retain moisture and feed your plants will keep your plants healthy and well fed. Based on these factors, determine where you’re going to grow your plants and make sure you have enough cleared space. Some vegetables, such as heirloom tomatoes or herbs can grow in pots if you don’t have the yard space.
Your packets of seeds and local nursery will be able to provide you with directions on how to plant to the plants you want. Follow their instructions carefully to give yourself the best possible chance of plant survival. Splurging on proper soil and plant food can be worth the extra cost. Remember the money you’re saving on the grocery bill will be worth it!
Plant and Maintain Your Garden
Springtime, from about February to May is the best time to plant your garden. Again, follow the instructions for your specific vegetable carefully. Once the seeds are planted, they need to be tended. While you may feel tempted to water them everyday and micromanage the growing process, don’t. You can drown the seeds that way. Follow watering instructions for the desert climate and let the vegetables grow. Do what you need to maintain them, but don’t overdo it.
Use these instructions to plant your first vegetable garden. During the summer and fall you can enjoy fresh, homegrown vegetables that you can feel proud of!