Now We Eat Healthier Vegetables
Since we started gardening we have been sharing what we learn through our home gardening tips because we think more people should learn the benefits of growing their own vegetables and fruits for healthier eating.
Your Healthy Vegetable Garden Needs Sunlight
Vegetables need water and nutrients to grow which takes good soil but without direct sunlight, for about 6 hours each day, you will not have much produce. The more sunlight the better chances at growing healthier and bigger produce.
We have trees growing on the east side of our yard which is right behind our vegetable garden. They have grown so tall now that they block the early morning sun until about 10am and then it takes at least another hour before it hits the entire garden.
You many not be able to see it very well in the image on the right but it shows that the vegetable plants that get the sun first are about 6 inches taller than those in the same row that only get direct sunlight an hour or two later.
Those trees we 8 feet shorter just a few years ago but they are on our side of the fence so I think I am going to have them removed this winter and see what happens to my vegetable garden next year.
Blocking The Cold North Wind
We have some things growing on the north side of the garage while our vegetable garden is on the south side of that garage and it’s quite noticeable how much of difference there is in how soon things start growing on the south side because it’s blocked from the north winds.
Now that I realize this I am going to start planting a couple of weeks earlier than I have in past years. We will see if that makes as much of a difference as I’ve learned it should.
Can’t Have Standing Water In Our Veggie Garden
So we know that location is vital because the more direct sunlight the better but your soil is an important factor as well for a couple of reasons.
A big factor is how well your vegetable garden drains and we know about that all too well as our garden didn’t drain well at all for the first couple of years due to the dense clay soil.
Each year we added more peat moss and compost and each year our veggie garden drained better and better. This year, which is our seventh year here, we have had the best drainage so far and even though we don’t get as much direct sunlight we are experiencing a bigger healthier garden.
Having a vegetable garden that drains better allows the root systems to grow bigger and deeper making a bigger and healthier plant.
Get More Produce In The Same Space
So you’ve done all you can to give your garden the best chance to produce quality and quantity of produce but we’re not done yet. If you start companion planting, which means you plant other veggies that work together with other veggies.
An example would be planting beans along with your corn so they have the stalk to climb which means you’re using less space to grow both crops. This works well for peas as well.
You can also plant lettuce and radishes in with your taller growing vegetables. This can help to aerate the soil at the same time for a better crop.
Think about weeding as well. The more veggies you are growing in a space the less room there will be for weeds to take hold. Companion planting really helps us with this issue and this way the nutrients are all going to your vegetables.
Organic Vegetable Gardening For Your Health
There is no place for pesticides anywhere on your property. Always find green methods of weed and pest control. This way you aren’t negatively affecting your property and the people and pets that live there.
We use only green methods of pest control so no poisons in our yard. I see a garden pest I get it out of the garden and destroy it immediately. Example, we have a lot of slugs that like to cause havoc in our squash garden. I use products to get rid of them but it doesn’t get them all all the time so when I see a slug I remove it from the area and destroy it.
Recycle Yard And Garden Waste
All summer long we have yard waste that used to be bagged and put at the roadside to go to the landfill site. Not any longer though as now we have a compost bin we use to recycle that yard waste which a few months later gives up healthy compost we put back into our flower beds and gardens.
Vegetable gardening can be really rewarding when you learn what to do. We had no gardening in our background except for what our parents did 40 or 50 years ago so we had to do some book learning to learn what to do and what not to do. It’s worth your time and a bit of money finding the right vegetable gardening help books.