Gardening 101 Day 12: Part 2~ Easy 5 Step How-to Plan Your Spring Garden

“Help us to be ever faithful gardeners of the spirit, who know that without darkness nothing comes to birth, and without light nothing flowers. ” May Sarton

Welcome to Part 2 of my Easy 5 Step How-to Plan Your Spring Garden. If you missed episode 11 Part 1, be sure to check that out for some fundamental basics.

If you missed episodes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7, 8, 9, and 10 of my Gardening 101 series, just click the links!

In today’s post, I am going to show you how to map out your garden. I do this every year so I can look back year after year. With that data, I can be sure to ensure I am rotating my crops effectively so I can rebuild my soil and the nutrients needed. It also helps me determine if I need to grow more or less of a particular crop.

This year is going to be an all new project. As you all know, we just moved into our new home this past December and I am creating an entirely new garden space. I’ve purchased 7 galvanized metal raised beds, (I am SOOO excited), so this is going to be a big project. 

I will need to kill all the sod in the space, level the ground, install the ground cover, raised beds, and peestone. To say the least, it’s going to be some back breaking work… I’m so thankful for my boys and Dave who will be helping me install this. Each year the kids usually help me do yard work on Mothers Day weekend, so that is this year’s task! 

I am also looking into a small greenhouse… but more on that. If not this year, maybe next. Fingers crossed friends!

This is what I will be working with this year. As you can see, it is a very nice sized space, and I love it is fenced in. Actually, it’s almost as big as my raised bed garden area at my previous home. But, you can see all the work that will be going into it. The table and chairs will be my reprieve in the garden… I cannot wait!

Planning your spring vegetable garden can be a fun and rewarding experience when done right. It allows you to grow your own fresh produce, save money on groceries, and enjoy the benefits of gardening. However, it’s important to take the time to plan and prepare properly to ensure a successful harvest. In drawing out your garden plot, you will have a much better chance at success.

Here’s my easy step-by-step approach to designing your garden!

Location, location, location!

The first step in planning your spring vegetable garden is to choose the right location. A sunny spot with well-drained soil is ideal for most vegetables. If you have a small yard or limited space, you can still have a vegetable garden by using raised beds or container gardening.

What are you planning to grow?

Next, you’ll need to decide which vegetables to grow. Consider which vegetables you and your family like to eat and what will grow well in your climate. Some popular spring vegetables include lettuce, spinach, radishes, peas, and broccoli. It’s also a good idea to choose a variety of vegetables so you have a steady supply of fresh produce throughout the spring.

How much space do you have, & how much space do you need?

When planning your garden, it’s important to consider the spacing requirements of the vegetables you’ve chosen. Most vegetables need at least six hours of direct sunlight per day, so make sure to position your garden in an area that gets plenty of sun. Also consider the mature size of the plants and make sure they have enough space to grow and flourish.

If you are going to garden in a tillable plot, be sure to test your soil!

A soil test will give you an idea of the pH level, nutrient content, and other characteristics of your soil. This will help you determine which vegetables will grow best and what, if any, soil amendments you need to make. If your soil is heavy clay, you may need to add organic matter to improve its structure. If your soil is sandy, you may need to add compost or other organic matter to help retain moisture.

Get your soil prepared!

After you’ve decided on the location and vegetables, it’s time to start preparing the soil. If you have a small area to work with, you can use a garden fork or trowel to turn over the soil and remove any debris. If you have a larger area, you can use a rototiller. Clear the area of any weeds or debris, and add any necessary soil amendments.

It’s all in the timing!

Another important aspect of planning a spring vegetable garden is timing. It’s important to know when to plant your vegetables so they will have enough time to mature before the hot summer weather arrives. You can find this information in gardening books or on the internet. Some vegetables, such as peas and lettuce, can be planted as early as the soil can be worked in the spring, while others, such as tomatoes and peppers, should not be planted until the weather has warmed up.

Do you have a watering source??

When planning your garden spot, especially if this is your first time, be sure you have an accessible water source nearby. Even if you have to connect a couple hoses together that’s fine, but you do not want to have to worry about carrying water and using a watering can. Believe me, you will become quickly disheartened!

It’s important to remember to water and fertilize your vegetable garden regularly. Most vegetables need about an inch of water per week. You can use a watering can or a hose with a sprinkler attachment to water your garden. It’s also a good idea to use a slow-release fertilizer to ensure that your vegetables get the nutrients they need throughout the growing season.

Wrapping it up!

Planning your vegetable garden can be a fun and rewarding experience if you take all these factors into consideration. By choosing the right location, selecting appropriate crops for your needs and area, tending to your soil, timing your planting, and providing regular care, you can enjoy a bountiful harvest of fresh produce all season long. 

Remember, gardening is a trial and error process and it’s okay to make mistakes. Keep learning and experimenting, and you’ll find that gardening becomes more enjoyable and productive over time.

I certainly hope you are encouraged to grow your own food. Even if you start with only two or three of these things, that’s a great start! 

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Until next time friends, eat fresh, shop local, & have a happy day,

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