Friday, February 17, 2012

What to Plant & When to Plant

Are you catching the bug to go and dig in your dirt?  If so, you are going to need something to plant and know when and where to plant it.

First, if you are planting a vegetable garden, choose vegetables that you would normally eat.  If this isn't your first gardening go-around, trying one or two new things can be fun.  Regardless, if you know you don't like turnips or beets, don't plant them.  Pretty simple, huh?

Second, visualize your harvest.  One reason I really like the Square Foot Garden* philosophy is it is far easier to have a good feel for how much your harvest will be and helps you to not over-plant.  (Check your local library to see if they have a copy for you to borrow.) 

Don't worry about using the whole package of seeds.  You can save unused seeds in a mason jar in your refrigerator as long as the lid is screwed on tightly.  Your seeds should be cool and dry.  Adding something to absorb any moisture in the jar, too, like a small amount of powdered milk folded up in a paper towel will prolong the life of your seeds.

Whether you've decided to do your own Square Foot Garden or a traditional garden, here are a couple of resources you might want to check out to help you plan your garden and when you are going to plant it.:

  • - This resource is free
  • -  Although this is not a free service, you do get a 30-day free trial.  I gave the 30-day trial a shot, planned my whole garden and got a planting schedule, too.  In addition if you are planning a Square Foot Garden, it will do that for you, too, telling you how many plants to plant in that square foot space.  Easy.
  • - After you've decided on what you are going to plant the "when" to plant is very helpful to know.  Depending on which area of the country you live in will determine when you'll be planting outdoors.  A lot of plants can be started indoors to give you a head start or keep you from having to purchase seedlings.
When planning, be sure to take into account companion planting like I mentioned a couple days ago.  This will help to boost your yields and make for "happy" plants.

One last thing.  Crop rotation is incredibly important to the ongoing vitality of your gardens.  Here is the best and easiest resource I have found so far to cover that concern:


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