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Vegetable Gardening For Beginners
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So you made a good decision today and committed to starting your own vegetable garden.

Congratulations! But, now what?

Well, I am not going to pretend it is the easiest thing to do, but it isn't that hard either. Just follow some simple guidelines for beginners, and you will be on your way to enjoying fresh picked produce grown by your own hands. Exciting prospect isn't it? Well, let's get started then!

One mistake many beginner gardeners make is to try too hard to learn everything about growing vegetables before they have their first seeds. Please take my advice and take it slow.

Approach your new hobby with enthusiasm and learn only what you need to know to get started. You don't want to try to do too much in the beginning. You will spend more time worrying about what you forgot than just enjoying the act of gardening.

First, understand that you are not trying to grow a commercial garden. You don't need much space to create the perfect garden for yourself. In fact, you only need about 25 sq. ft. of soil to grow enough for an average family. Less if you are only growing for one. This is excellent news, because it's better to start with a smaller garden and expand it each season. Another option is to just grow your garden in containers. One plant per container is a simple way to get started.

When choosing the location of your garden, be sure to consider the needs of the plants.

1. Sunlight

Without enough sunlight, plant growth gets stifled. In fact, they probably won't grow at all. Vegetables need at least 6 hours of direct sunlight each day. 8 or more is ideal. You can use artificial light to create the exact amount of light your plant needs if you have an indoor garden.

2. Water

Most plants need 1 in. of water a week for best growth. There are various ways to make sure proper watering, but plan on watering them every 2-3 days. If you are growing indoors, the watering requirements differ somewhat since your potting mix will hold moisture longer.

3. Vegetable varieties

This is the fun part for most growers. Choosing the veggies you are going to plant. You can grow just about anything. Just be sure to properly space your plants. Overcrowding will definitely cut your harvest. Each plant's needs are usually listed on the seed packet or the container will be labelled if you buy starter plants.

You will also need the right tools for the job. A basic set will do for now. Try to keep these in your tool shed:

Hand cultivator Measuring stick or tape for spacing Hand Trowel for transplanting Well-fitting gardening gloves Watering Can (optional) primarily for indoor plants Stakes or cages for vines plants or any plants needing support

Tips:

Use 1/4 of the recommended amount of fertilizer for indoor plants.

Time the amount of direct sunlight in your target locations before planting.

Stick to determinate varieties of plants for indoors. Indeterminate varieties never stop growing and are best suited for outdoor growing.

Be sure to use potting mix for any plants in containers. It is specially formulated for container growing. Consider adding garden soil to the top 2-3 inches of soil for outdoor gardens.

There are many tricks and tips that you will discover along the way, but these basic guidelines are all you need to start your vegetable garden. You will learn the most from actually getting in the garden yourself. A mix of outdoor and some indoor gardening is a good way to find what works best for you.


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