These year-round vegetable gardening tips will teach you how to grow vegetable and herbs successfully throughout the year!
Spring Planting Tips
Spring Staples: Peas, onions, mustard potatoes, radishes, turnips, broccoli, carrots, cabbage
1. Start soil amendments from the third week of January or roughly a week after the last frost date.
2. Use a rototiller to dig the soil to 10-inches deep and add compost or straw mulch to the topsoil. This will promote moisture retention and counteract pesky weed growth.
3. Sprinkle liquid fish fertilizer in the soil bi-weekly during the growing season.
4. Correct soil pH with the addition of lime.
5. Place milk jugs over your plants to offer a weatherproof growing environment in early February and keep cutworms at bay.
6. After planting the seeds, slather soil and water on the rows liberally.
Summer Planting Tips
Summer Staples: carrots, cucumbers, lettuce, cherry tomatoes, beets, radish, heat-loving herbs, green onions.
1. Soaking the seeds before planting kickstarts germination by maintaining steady moisture and temperature conditions for plants like beans, peas, melon, and cucumber.
2. If winters are long where you live, you may consider starting your veggies indoors and transplant in the soil only when the temperatures shoot up. Remember, most plants can’t survive in temperatures below 40 F.
3. Occasional deep watering is better than frequent shallow watering.
4. For mid-summer planting, water more often to help plants combat the heat. Avoid making the soil too soggy as that could promote plant diseases.
5. Give partial shade to your lettuce plants for optimal health.
6. Use loose, aerated, well-drained soil. Don’t plant in subsoil consisting of shale, sand or gravel.
7. For container gardening, use planters with big drainage holes and fill up with high-quality potting soil.
8. Try planting certain types of veggies together. E.g., a combination of celery, carrots, and cucumber will work, but broccoli and tomatoes won’t go well. Cauliflower and cabbage will.
9. Mulch regularly, especially around the plant roots to ensure moisture retention and keep off weeds.
10. Plant marigolds around your veggies to deter bugs.
Fall Planting Tips
Fall Staples: Leeks, cabbage, lettuce, kohlrabi, turnips, mustard, spinach, arugula, rhubarb, asparagus, parsley
1. Two weeks before frost is the ideal time for fall planting. Start your seeds indoors for best results.
2. Amend your soil with a layer of compost, bone meal and blood. This is important to maintain a healthy ground for the harsh cold days to come.
3. For a mid-fall harvest, plant in August itself.
4. Plant lettuce early in fall to get a good yield before the first freeze.
5. Sow seeds for winter crops such as turnips, radish, and carrot. Use a free-draining and loose seed raising mix.
6. Protect your vegetable seedlings from slugs and snails by spraying coffee grounds all around.
7. Get ready to lift crop potatoes; harvest pumpkins before the third week of fall.
8. Ward off aphids and flies with a generous spray of hot, soapy water.
9. If you’re expecting early frosts, cover young seedlings with cloches.
Winter Planting Tips
Winter Staples: Cauliflower, kale, Brussels sprouts, Spinach, Swiss Chard, radish, shallots, garlic, onion
1. A soil mix of compost, potting soil, and pine bark mulch works as a nice slow-release fertilizer to restore lost nutrients in the soil.
2. Use a 3×3 bed by using cardboard as the base. This keeps the weeds out.
3. Water only when the topsoil is dry. Waterlogged soil is the main trigger of winter diseases.
4. Cover young seedlings with clear shower curtains to speed up germination.
5. Use a high-phosphorus fertilizer twice a month for best results.
6. If you’re expecting a particularly harsh winter, string fairy lights around your veggie garden. This will emit enough heat to prevent the plants from freezing.
7. Harvest only the outer leaves; don’t touch the inner leaves until February.
8. Use the fertilizer that has high water content, such as manure tea.
9. If you don’t want to engage in hard-core gardening, consider planting cover crops like buckwheat and fava beans. They boost the nutrient profile of the soil and keep off winter erosion.
THIS INFOGRAPHIC, COURTESY OF Urban Organic Gardener WILL TEACH YOU HOW TO GROW VEGETABLES YEAR ROUND.
Year-round vegetable gardening tips via Urbanorganicgardener.com