Setting up a vegetable garden in your own backyard is a great way to educate children about sustainability, combat the rising cost of vegetables, and ensure your family is consuming fresh, seasonal produce grown with no added pesticides or other potentially harmful chemicals. For all the garden supplies Mornington Peninsula locals need for residential and commercial landscaping projects, Bittern Garden Supplies is the leading choice. If you are looking to plant a vegetable garden and want to ensure it thrives and supplies you the best harvest possible, here’s a few tips to help make your vegetable patch a success.
Determine Your Garden’s Sweet Spot for Growing
It is important to spend some time preparing and pre-planning you garden for planting your favourite vegetables. Observe your yard at different times over different days and find out which areas get the most sun and the most shade. This allows you to select veggies that will grow and thrive in your yard and position them according to their needs. Tomatoes for example love a lot of sun and heat to grow, and green, leafy vegetables grow better in shady, cooler spots. It’s also important to find a location which has a good amount of airflow, as this will help to keep your veggie plants healthy.
Plan Your Garden Beds
Assuming you’re gardening by hand and not with a tractor, it’s usually easier to grow in beds narrow enough that you can reach into the centre from both sides without having to step on the soil. Compacting the soil by standing on it makes it harder for plant roots to penetrate and seek out air, water and nutrients. The length of your beds is up to you, but if they’re too long to walk around quickly you’ll soon find yourself taking shortcuts across the soil. Raised beds are often recommended for a beginner gardener, but they are entirely optional.
One of the most important yet commonly forgotten elements of a vegetable garden is good pathways. Paths can be made of concrete or gravel, or surfaced with woodchip, sawdust or other bulky organic material. Make sure paths are wide enough to enable you to reach all beds with a wheelbarrow on at least one side.
Good Soil Means Good Vegetables
At the heart of every successful vegetable garden is good soil. Soil that’s in good condition is the secret behind successful harvests, so how can you make sure your soil is good for growing?
Add Organic Matter – no matter what your soil type, organic matter will improve your soil’s structure and feed the essential microbial life within it. It’s naturally packed full of nutrients that will increase the fertility of your soil. It will also make heavy clay soils lighter and improve drainage, and help retain moisture and nutrients in sandy soils.
Lay Organic Mulch – An organic mulch is one of the best ways to improve fertility and soil structure. It will also lock in moisture, helping you conserve water and making your plants resilient to hot dry weather.
Protect Your Vegetables
Pesky insects can be known to ruin even the best prepared vegetable patch. However, not all crawling and flying critters are bad for your garden. Without bees, many food crops will fail and many other insects perform a service by destroying harmful insects. Spraying organic pesticides and insecticides can destroy good bugs as well as bad ones so it’s important to use other methods of protection. Insect mesh or horticultural fleece allow light and water to filter through whilst keeping larger pests, birds and animals from destroying your crop. Planting strong-scented herbs can also deter pests when planted among or near the vegetables.
Water and Feed
Newly seeded beds require frequent watering, however established crops need much less. A great way to conserve water and reduce the need to irrigate is to add a layer of mulch to your soil. When it comes to feeding, quick growing crops usually won’t need supplemental fertilizers if the soil is fertile, however, long-term veggies will benefit from a boost with a water soluble organic food.
Mornington Garden Supplies for Landscaping Projects of Any Size
For mulch in Moorooduc, garden supplies in Sorrento or a new driveway in Dromana, our knowledgeable and experienced team are ready with the supplies, services and advice you need to achieve your landscaping and gardening goals. Get in touch with us today on 5983 9779 or enquire online now.