So this past winter I was getting a huge itch to start my own veggie garden. I loved the idea of growing your own food and the rewarding outcome of being able to eat it! I've never gardened before and had no idea where I was going to start. I knew I wanted to go all organic and not use chemicals for fertilizers and keeping the critters away. I read countless sites and articles about the dos and don'ts of organic vegetable gardening. I have a whole notebook full of notes, no joke. And a board on Pinterest to go with it.
I thought it would be a fun idea to take you along with me on my venture into gardening. I'm going to share with you all the things I do to prepare my garden and the things I come across in my garden. You'll get to see my veggies grow and everything I do to keep them from dying a horrible death. I'll share with you all the tips and tricks I figure out while growing a vegetable garden (and doing it organically) for the time! Maybe by the end of the summer, I'll be a pro.....
By no means am I a professional and I don't know what I'm talking about half the time. Like I said, this is my first time gardening and most of the time I'm completely lost. But I'm doing this little mini series for fun and so that all those other beginners out there can have someone else who is completely overwhelmed with them!
( I bought all my products from Home Depot. I'm using links from the Burpee site so you can easily see what I used. You can still have all these products at Home Depot.)
I started all my seeds inside with this seed starting kit and these bio degrable pots. I did one row of tomatoes, lettuce and spinach in the tray and two sets of peas and beans in the pots. I started in the middle of March (not taking into consideration that we'd still be in winter in May here in WI) and after about a week all my seedlings started to sprout. After a few weeks my lettuce and spinach didn't make it. I think they grew to fast and they got really long and just fell over. I tossed those. My beans didn't grow well either so I tossed those. I'm hoping they do better when planted directly in the garden. I should also mention that all the seeds I used were also organic.
My tomatoes and peas are still growing right now in front of a nice big window that gets lots of sunlight. In the past 2 weeks I've been moving them out onto the porch to get use to the being outside. Next week I'll start putting them outside right before I plant them. This helps the plant acclimate to the weather and temperature outside so they don't get shocked when you transplant them.
I stuck my tomato/bean/pea cages into where I wanted to plant them. I'm still waiting another week to plant them just in case WI decides to freeze over one last time. So right now it looks like I'm just growing metal cages. I did however plant my spinach and lettuce seeds. I did one row of spinach and two rows of romaine lettuce. I plan on planting another set of each in a few weeks so I have another crop ready to go later.
All I did for the lettuce and spinach seeds is create a shallow trench about 2 1/2 feet long and I tossed the seeds in. The directions on the seed package will tell you how deep. My romaine lettuce and spinach was 1/4 -1/2 inch deep. I then covered those babies up and gave them a good watering. I used plastic tags to identify where all veggies were. We'll see if they hold up through the weather or not.
That's about it for today. In about a week or two I'll post about transplanting my tomatoes and planting my beans and other peas. Hope you enjoyed this first installment of my gardening series. If you have any tips I would love to hear them! Thank you so much!
Here are a few helpful links I used when first getting started.
Smart Gardener- this site helps you plan out your garden. It virtually maps out your gardens and where to plants things with how much space you have available.
Organic Gardening- a perfect site for any question you may have about organic gardening. I literally found out so much by reading some of the things on here.
Southern Living- This was a nice article about the how tos of lettuce planting. However it says you shouldn't plant lettuce for summer. I say lies, I think mine will do just fine. It gets enough shade that it should stay cool enough to not bolt right away.