Monday, March 14, 2011

How To Make Organic Vegetable Garden Patch

A well-placed vegetable plot will be positioned so that it is in full sun for most of the year, especially from early March to late November. Some vegetables such as Brussels Sprouts continue to grow and need sun in the winter so take this into consideration as well.

The Vegetable Gardener's Bible (10th Anniversary Edition)Many vegetables are hungry feeders and almost all need a constant supply of water. So don't start your vegetable plot next to trees or hedges both of which will take the lion's share of water and nutrients.

During the summer months a constant supply of water can only be guaranteed by hand watering, either by a hosepipe or watering can. So make sure the plot is near a supply of water. You may also want herbs to be near the house so that they can easily be harvested when needed.

Shelter also needs to be considered. If your area suffers from strong winds it will be necessary to create a windbreak to protect your vegetable patch. A low hedge (not too high or it will take water and nutrients from the soil) can be effective. Strong shrubs such as potentillas will provide some shelter and summer colour.

Home Vegetable Gardening: A Complete and Practical Guide to the Planting and Care of all Vegetables, Fruits and Berries Worth Growing for Home Use (Illustrated Edition)Consider also using raised beds, they are ideal for beginners to gardening. Click here to go to our page on raised beds.

Clearing The Site
Before planting vegetables you may well need to clear the site. Existing weeds can be a big problem and there are several ways to clear them. Chemicals such as glyphosphate will kill most weeds dead within three or four weeks but the effect on the soil is not fully understood. The best method is digging the soil well and pulling out all the weeds as you go. Destroy the weeds, do not put them on the compost heap

Another "green" method of clearing weeds is to cover the ground with old carpets for a couple of months. This will kill most weeds but not all.

As well as clearing weeds, other objects on the proposed site need to be cleared as well. This includes rubbish and large stones.

Digging The Vegetable Patch
All that is required are a fork and lots of effort. Dig the soil to a spade's depth with a fork, turning the soil and breaking it up as you go. Remove any roots and weeds in the soil.
If the vegetable plot is large, a good compromise is to dig half of it in the first year, and cover the other half with old carpet. Leave the carpet on until next year and then it can be dug over when all the weeds are dead.

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