Let's Get Started!
Now that you know the benefits of growing your own vegetables in an at-home garden, let's get yours started. Here's a list of materials, procedures and tips to get you growing.
- Small Shovel
- Garden hoe or rake
- Hammer or power drill
- 12 three-inch nails
- 4 pieces of 2 by 4 (two four-foot pieces, two eight-foot pieces)
- 6 bags of soil
- Seeds of the veggies of your choice (or small, pre-sprouted plants that can be purchased at a local nursery)
- Gardening gloves (optional)
1. Designate the space in your yard where you want your garden to be. It should be an area that gets six hours of direct sunlight per day.
2. Loosen up the soil in that area with the garden hoe or rake.
3. Build your garden bed by using your three-inch nails to attach the pieces of 2 by 4. There should be three nails at each corner with the four-foot pieces marking the width of the bed and the eight-foot pieces marking the length of the bed.
4. Empty all of the soil to the inside of the bed and even it out. There should be a couple inches of wood left standing above the soil level. (You may not use all of your soil.)
5. Use your small shovel to dig holes about six inches deep. Plant your seeds or small plants at least one foot apart from one another (depending on the adult size of the plant) and in rows.
6. Water regularly, and have fun watching your garden grow! (Water at least once a day. Seeds need lots of attention!)
Tips for Growing
Here are a few extra helpful hints while tending to your garden.
- Add some compost to your soil mixture to make it richer and more nutrient.
- Keep an eye on the weather. If it's too hot, you might have to increase your watering frequency. If it rains a lot, you might only need to water a few times per week.
- Add a thin layer of mulch on top of your soil to keep it moist and to prevent weed growth.
- Research the best times of year to grow the plants you'd like to put in your garden for the best results. Check out this chart to help get you started. (Seasons in this chart are set for Gainesville, Fla.)