Up next in Vegetable Gardening (24 videos)
Get your vegetable patch started with these gardening tutorials.
You Will Need
- A sunny garden spot
- A wire mesh fence
- Seeds or seedlings
- A soil test
Decide on a garden type
Decide between a raised-bed garden or an in-ground one. Raised beds, which consist of purchased topsoil that sits within a wooden frame, are ideal if your soil is stony or sandy. The main advantage of an in-ground garden is that it needs less watering.
Pick a good spot
Pick a spot that gets a lot of sun and isn't obscured by tree or hedge shade.
Prep the land
Prepare the land by building your raised bed or clearing and tilling a patch of land to a depth of about one foot. A 10 foot by 10 foot parcel is a good size for a beginner. For an in-ground garden, install a wire mesh fence three to four feet high to help keep out critters.
Seeds versus seedlings
Decide if you want to plant seeds directly in the soil; start growing seeds in small containers, like egg cartons, and then transplant them into your garden when they take root. Or, buy seedlings from a nursery that are ready to go into the ground. If you start with seeds, you'll wait longer to harvest your vegetables.
Plan your veggies
Plot out what you'd like to plant, taking into consideration what grows well in your area. Orient the rows east to west with the tallest plants on the north side so they won't shade the shorter ones.
Sow your seeds
Start your seeds following the instructions on the package. Plant your seedlings when it's appropriate to do so, which depends on both the crop and your climate. Your local garden center or nearest Extension office can give you this information, or you can find it on the web.
Try companion planting
Plant compatible vegetables near each other. To find out which veggies grow better together and which are best kept far apart, type "companion planting" into a search engine.
Put in some flowers
Plant a few flowers among your crops. They'll attract bees, which will help pollinate your plants.