Even a small patch of vegetable garden can prove to be a boon to a family. The family will get organic fresh produce to eat at very economic costs. So it is good for both the health of the body and the pocket. When planning to start a fresh patch, it pays to go through various vegetable garden ideas, so that one can harvest maximum benefits from the hard work that will go into developing a kitchen garden.
Vegetable garden ideas to help choose the right spot
Look at the space around and decide where the vegetable garden should go. Remember a vegetable garden will need a minimum of 6 hours of direct sunlight to thrive and give good produce. The southern side of the home is generally a good idea.
If it is the first time you are planning a vegetable garden, it would make sense to start with a small patch. It will keep the investments (both time and money) low, and give a fair idea of what to expect.
Inspect the patch that has been earmarked to envision your vegetable garden ideas. Avoid using a patch that is weed ridden, but if there is no other option indulge in thorough weeding before starting out on the vegetable garden.
Also ensure that there is a water source nearby, or else you will end up with the back breaking work of lugging water to your vegetable patch during the dry periods.
Good drainage and proper plants as ideas for your vegetable garden
Another good idea for vegetable garden is to check and arrange for proper drainage of the garden patch. Drainage will depend on the slope of the patch and its soil composition. The ideal drainage is a slope of below 1.5%. If the garden is steeper, one will need to take measures like terracing to ensure proper drainage. Drainage is the key to success of your vegetable garden ideas.
The next step would be to look for potential competition in the neighborhood of the chosen patch. Presence of tall trees and big plants in proximity will mean that they will leach into the water and nutrients meant for the vegetable garden. If there is nothing that can be done to avoid the big neighbors, a trench about two feet deep around the patch will be helpful.
What to plant
Vegetables will need to be planted according to the season and the time of the year. Some vegetables like okra, cantaloupe, pepper, squash, watermelon, sweet potato etc are tender and will not bear frost at all. Winter squash, tomatoes, bean (bush, lima or pole), corn and others are not so tender and will tolerate a little frost.
Beets, cauliflowers, lettuce, carrots are semi-hardy vegetables and will survive through considerable frost. Hardy vegetables like garden peas, collard, kale, broccoli etc… will survive through cold winters so consider using them as practical ideas for vegetable gardens.
Give some thought to the layout of the vegetable garden. Depending on the available space one can choose from row formation, beds, spot planting and even split plots. Each of these has its own advantages and disadvantages which should be taken into consideration before starting out. If there is a major shortage of space, vegetable garden ideas like container gardens, vertical planting and dwarf corps can come to the rescue.