Spring fever is in full swing around our house and we are all waiting impatiently to get outside in the yard. Its a bit too early for any tilling or planting but our spring garden planning is underway!
Each year is a bit of trial and error for my garden, mostly because I try and grow fruit that won't tolerate our cold weather or I plant enough to feed an army.
These are my top 5 tips (mistakes I have made) that I use in our garden planning.
Tips for Garden Planning!
Know your gardening zone.
This is the number one thing that you must consider when you begin planning a garden for the year. The growing zone that you are in will determine how long your local growing season is and what kind of plants that you can grow.
The zones are divided out by the average annual minimum winter temperature. Basically, you don't want to try to grow something that likes super hot weather when you live in a cooler climate.
You can find out what growing zone that you are in my going to the USDA website and entering your zip code.
Ask yourself what you and your family like to eat.
There is no use trying to grow ten cabbage plants if your family hates cabbage.
It is really easy to get swept up in the excitement of getting out in the garden. Also, consider how much each plant produces and how much your family will eat.
For example, a single zucchini plant can produce quite a bit and I am the only one in my family who really likes to eat it. I have to hide it in food if I want the kids to eat it.
So, for my garden one or two zucchini plants are plenty. Over time you will learn about what veggies produce well because it will vary in each region.
Consider your gardening space.
This one is very important. How much sun does your gardening space get? Is water easily accessible?
Most vegetables grow best when they get at least six hours of sun a day and regular watering. The location is so important because you could have everything else perfect and your results would still suffer if you chose a poor location.
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Buy your seeds.
I recommend ordering your seed varieties online. You will have a broad range of different varieties to choose from for each type of veggie.
Also, if you only want organic or heirloom varieties then those would be more difficult to find in your garden store.
I get all my heirloom seeds from Mountain Valley Seed Company and they have an amazing selection.
Know your limits.
This is a big one that I am guilty of not remembering almost every year. With spring fever in full swing, I seem to forget that there are going to be other things going on during the summer and I don't want to spend a full 8 hour day tending to the garden.
Life happens to all of us and it is so easy to fall behind on the tending and weeding. And it is so so hard to catch up again.
So start small. It is better to have so free time to actually enjoy your garden than to be drowning in weeds.
So there you have it! You can follow these tips to help out with your garden planning this year.
If you can't wait to get your hand dirty you can learn about my Top 5 Seeds That You Can Start Indoors Now!