Saturday, February 11, 2012

Getting Your Vegetable Garden Ready for Spring

Submitted by: Stephanie

Whether you suffer through harsh, cold winters or enjoy relatively mild ones, we are coming up on the time when you need to get ready to plant your seeds for your vegetable garden.

If you need another compost bin this time of year is great to add them, if only because there's not much actual gardening work to do. Build one or buy one, just make sure you can easily add, remove and turn the material.

Clean up your tools. Sharpen blades if they need it. Clean off old dirt and wipe with an oiled cloth to help prevent rusting.

At this time you can also start planning your next garden. You can figure out what you want to grow and how you're going to lay that garden out. Planning ahead can help you make the most of your garden. Getting things started at the right time for each type of plant will help your garden succeed.

If you want an early start, get some planters and sun lamps and start your seeds indoors. If you get sufficient sunlight, placing the boxes in windows can help you get that early start too.

This is a great time for looking back at how your garden did last year and your goals for this year. For example, my garden last year failed miserably due to a combination of poor soil, a neighboring shade tree that had been shading my garden being cut to pieces and an unusually hot summer.

Over the winter we've been preparing quick compost for the soil. This is just throwing fresh kitchen scraps into the blender with some water, then pouring it into the garden. It's our first step in improving the soil naturally. More will be done as planting time approaches.

Obviously, factors that are out of your control you can't do anything about. Heat waves cannot be avoided and neighbors can be unpredictable (you should have seen that poor tree when they were done 'pruning' it!). Some years insects are more problematic than others.

In those cases you need to have plans for how to handle it. Keep an eye on what the sun is doing to your plants during a heat wave and ensure they have enough water. Know what pest control steps you are willing to take.

Planning and preparing to plant your garden before you can actually start planting gives you a lot of advantages when it's time to really work your garden. It gets some of the chores out of the way and leaves you prepared for a great start to your vegetable garden.

About Author: Stephanie Foster runs to keep track of how her own garden grows and to give gardening advice. Visit her site to learn more about vegetable gardening.

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