With the Earth's ever-growing population leaving some people concerned as to whether there will be enough food for everyone, having a backyard garden is something that's experienced a resurgence in popularity. Years ago everyone had a small veggie garden in the backyard, but today most plots are too small and their lives are too busy. If you're thinking of starting a backyard vegetable garden, this guide should help you start off on the right foot.
Firstly, you need a patch of land that you will be able to protect from wandering animals and people. Front yards are less than ideal because they're too exposed. Most people don't have fences in the front. The back yard of your home should do nicely, however. There's no need to use your entire yard for growing, either. A patch of only fifteen feet by fifteen feet can grow enough veggies to supplement your family's diet. Chose the sunniest patch, because remember: plants need light!
Another thing that plants need is nutrients, and unless by some miracle your yard was once used as a compost heap, chances are there aren't enough nutrients in the soil to make a vegetable plant happy. So you'll want to go to your local gardening supply store and pick up some topsoil that the plants will like better. Even just to start them off.
When you're choosing the vegetables you'll grow in your garden, keep two things in mind: what your family likes to eat and what is appropriate for the climate. With our long winters and relatively cool summers, cool climates aren't a likely place to grow things like bananas or watermelons. However, potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, zucchini, beets, pumpkins, and squash all tend to do rather well in cooler aired gardens as long as they're planted and harvested at the right times.
Just like your water heater, the seeds in your garden will need occasional maintenance. If the weather has been dry, water your garden. If weeds are cropping up, pull them out. If the plants are struggling, spread some fertilizer to help them. If they're being bothered by people or animals, put up signs or fences. Each year you should also mix up the soil before you replant and infuse it with some fully composted yard and kitchen scraps. This will help replenish the nutrients and get the soil ready for another crop.
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