Did everyone get their planting done? We have all of our edible garden planted (for the most part) but I still have flower gardens and pots to do. What a rainy spring we have been having!
Here are some things about garden planting we have learned along the way.
1. Make a Plan
This is especially helpful for the veggie garden. By making a plan you can make sure you have room for everything you want to grow, and you can also make room for companion planting. Did you know that tomatoes and potatoes should never be planted together? We didn’t, and had diseased plants of both types last year. This year I used the list in this book extensively when planting both veggies and herbs this year. There are a few online lists too, like the one found here. Hubby created a beautiful computer drawing of our garden this year – but in the past we have done this by hand.
2. Prepare Your Soil
Nothing worse than planting your garden only to have nothing grow. Add your organic matter and dig it in. Check out this post if you missed it.
3. Give each plant the room it needs.
When planting tiny seeds and little seedlings it is easy to forget how big they will become and plant them close together. Crowded plants are more likely to become diseased and will often produce a diminished crop. Follow the guidelines on the seed packet, give your plants room to grow!
4. Stagger your planting of quick crops (lettuces, peas, beans) so you can harvest all season.
Despite being an avid vegetable gardener, hubby doesn’t actually like eating most vegetables. When we used to plant all of our seeds all at once, everything would be ready to harvest at the same time, and most of it went to the neighbours or to waste, because I just couldn’t eat it all myself. Spreading out the seed planting in 2 – 4 week intervals gives me veggies throughout the season, in smaller amounts. Some day I want to try succession planting, but I don’t think I’ll be ready for it this year!
How to Plant Your Seedlings
1. Dig a hole slightly bigger and deeper than the soil around your seedling.
2. Pour water into the hole.
3. Place your plant in. If you have leggy tomato plants, bury them right up to the bottom leaves. If they are really leggy, you can tip them on their side when planting (you’ll have to dig a longer hole.) This will give you strong roots. If your plants have a lot of root growth already and especially if they are root-bound (you can see the roots in the soil when you pull it out of the container) break up the roots gently with your fingers before planting.
4. Place the soil back around the plant, filling in above the soil they were potted in. Water again.
5. Give your new plant some protection from wind and slugs. We use tin cans and yogurt containers with the bottoms cut out. These are fairly effective, although sometimes the slugs still get in, and sometimes the wind just blows them away.
6. Keep your new seedlings well watered.
Do you have any gardening planting tips and tricks? Please leave them in the comments. Don’t forget you can post your pictures and blog links on our Facebook page!