I love having a vegetable garden. But over the years, I’ve had a number of missteps. From them, I’ve learned a lot. In this post, you’ll find five vegetable garden mistakes to avoid, as well as details on what I’m planting this year and why.
5 Vegetable Garden Mistakes to Avoid
- Make sure your garden is close to a nearby water source. Tucking it away in a corner might seem like a good idea at first, but when you’re dragging a hose 100 feet in 98 percent humidity, you will wish you’d built it elsewhere. I did this at my last house and hot, dry summers (and my unwillingness to face the heat) killed nearly all my plants.
- Choose a nice sunny spot. If your area is even a little shaded, vegetables, like tomatoes, most likely won’t ripen.
- Put taller plants behind shorter ones. This makes watering easier. The last couple of years I found that some of my veggies completely blocked others from getting water. Both times I realized this too late, but this year, I’m armed with a better plan.
- Unless you have a large family or are a pickling guru, one cucumber plant is enough. I promise. Every year, I’m amazed at how much one produces.
- Give each plant plenty of room to grow. They start out so small, but as you can see above, they will get much larger, making harvesting really difficult.
- Make a plan and stick to it (mostly). Having a gameplan at the nursery will keep you from buying more than you need and ensure you have plenty of space for all your goodies. If you see something great you hadn’t planned on, swap it out for another plant.
Vegetable Garden Plan
I always wait until the first weekend of May to start planting to avoid the possibility of a late frost, which means I’ll be getting mine ready on Saturday or Sunday.
I’ve laid out my vegetable garden plan below, but am sure I may deviate a little based on what’s available.
You may notice I did not include cucumbers in my vegetable garden plan this year. Instead, I’m hoping to plant one somewhere else in the yard, so I won’t be faced with vines so thick they’d make a jungle jealous. However, I haven’t found the perfect spot yet.
New to Gardening? Start an Herb Garden.
Vegetables can be a little finicky, but herbs are very forgiving. Plus, there’s nothing quite as fabulous as telling people you added “fresh basil from the garden” to your pasta. If you’re not ready to start a vegetable garden, I’d recommend choosing a sunny spot and planting:
- At least two basil plants.
- A large rosemary plant. (I’ve never had much luck getting the small ones to grow very big.)
- Oregano. (Don’t choose one that doubles as ground cover, unless you want something to takeover.)
- Chives. (These will come back and have the most delightful purple flowers in the spring. I have mine in a pot that resurfaces every year.)
You’d like to add some mint to your garden? Don’t. It’s weed-like tendencies have a habit of absolutely invading a space. Instead, plant it in a pot and enjoy it there.
I’d love to know what are you planting, Share your garden plans in the comments below.