Have you been thinking about growing your own vegetables? Do you know how to grow vegetables? Does gardening really save you money?
In this blog, we will help you answer these questions, and give you some tips for beginners to start a garden in your yard.
Gardening for Beginners
It’s not as hard as you may think! Here are a few tips for gardening to get you started:
You need to make sure that when you plan out your garden, that you put it somewhere where you can see it daily. You know the saying, “out of sight, out of mind?” If you plant your garden where you can’t see it, most tend to forget about it and not manage it as it’s needed.
With so many choices of soil out there, it may be hard for you to choose the right one for your garden. If you are doing a garden in the ground, you want to make sure that you get a soil that is rich with nutrients and drains well. We suggest using the Miracle Grow All-Purpose Gaden Soil. If you are doing a garden in a raised bed, you also want to make sure that your soil is nutrient rich and the water can get through to the bottom of the roots.
3. Know Your Zone:
Knowing your “zone” will help you choose the best plants for the zone in which you live. The higher the zone number, the warmer the climate. So if a plant is “hardy to zone 4” and your garden in zone 5, that plant will survive in your yard. If, however, you’re in zone 3, it’s too cold to grow that particular plant. Find out your hardiness zone here.
4. Choosing the Right Herbs and Vegetables to Grow:
It’s essential to select plants that match your growing conditions. This means putting sun-loving plants into a sunny spot, choosing heat-tolerant plants in warm climates, and giving ground-gobbling vines like pumpkins and melons ample elbow room (or a trellis to climb).
It is essential to do your homework and pick different varieties that will grow well where you live, and in the space you have. To get a step up on growing herbs and veggies, start with vigorous young plants instead of trying to grow from seed.
Apply a layer of mulch that’s 2 to 3 inches deep once your done planting your veggies. This will help reduce weeds by blocking out the sun and reduce the loss of moisture, so you don’t have to water as much.
If you don’t want to put down mulch, you can put down straw, shredded leaves, or some other material, anything that will allow the moisture in, but keep the weeds out.
6. Feeding Your Garden:
Just like anything else, it is essential that you feed your garden. We suggest using Miracle Grow All Purpose Plant Food. Feed your garden every 1-2 weeks. One gallon of the diluted product will cover up to 10 square feet.
How to Grow the Best Vegetables
May we suggest that you only plant what you will eat?
It would be silly to plant an herb or vegetable that you would not use, not to mention you are taking up valuable space in your garden.
For instance, if you don’t like radishes and no one in the house will eat them, then why waste time and money on planting them.
Nearly all vegetables need access to full sun (meaning they will have sunlight 8-10 hours a day) and have well-draining soil. The vegetable garden also should be located near a source of water so that you remember to water and feed it.
Depending on your zone, you will want to plant herbs and veggies that you can and will use once they are ready to be harvested. According to the Farmers Almanac, here are the top 10 vegetables to plant:
(Click on a veggie’s name to see its detailed Growing Guide.)
- Tomatoes—5 plants, staked
- Zucchini squash—4 plants
- Peppers—6 plants
- Bush beans
The vegetables they suggest are common, productive plants that are relatively easy to grow, which is excellent for beginners.
Does Gardening Really Save Money?
Growing your own food can be one of the most rewarding uses of time. It can be mentally stimulating (and sometimes relaxing connecting with nature), a way to be active outside getting fresh air, and provides healthy food for the family.
Getting the garden started from scratch may cost you a little more upfront; however, the money you can save down the line by planting your own veggies can be very rewarding.
Not to mention, you know where your veggies have been. You don’t have to worry about them being sprayed by pesticides, taking the long tour on a truck to the store, and you can grow what you want!
Herbs are some of the most natural plants to grow, since they’re rarely bothered by pests, thrive in mediocre soil, and need minimal water once established. Basil & parsley are the two herbs that are used the most, with chives and thyme running close behind.
Basil freezes well on its own, and you can preserve it lots of other ways, too. 1-2 plants will provide you with enough leaves to keep stocked all winter long, which will pay for itself multiple times over.
Now that we are in the BBQing season it’s nice to have your very own tomatoes on the vine to slice up for the burgers, or cut up for the salad! Tomatoes have a long harvest season and require little upkeep after planting and caging/staking other than moderate watering.
Plant Now, Eat Later
You can plan to grow more vegetables than you can eat fresh. The extra veggies that you produce can be preserved in a variety of ways so you can eat them during the winter months. Crops like carrots, potatoes, onions, and winter squash require little to no processing for long-term storage.
You can chop, blanch, and freeze extra vegetables, so they are ready when you are during the winter months. If you don’t have a lot of freezer space, a small chest freezer may be worth-your-while, if you are looking save some money on produce and enjoy your fresh veggies all year long.
Gardening can be so rewarding. Can you save money? Yes! As long as you plant and grow what you will use and eat. But more importantly, you’ll be enjoying your experience of growing, harvesting, cooking, and eating the freshest, tastiest food you can get, which could be priceless!
We hope you have enjoyed this blog! We would love to hear your thoughts and feedback! Be sure to like and follow us on our social media channels: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube. Be sure to share comments and pictures using the hashtags: #homeaze #gardeningforbeginners #savemoneygardening #growyourownveggies.