After a sluggish winter, spring has finally rolled around and it’s the perfect time to get your vegetable garden in ship shape to provide a bumper harvest for the summer and autumn. Home grown vegetables are cheaper, organic, and are said to taste better for all the hard work you put in! Anyone can build an abundant veggie garden, and there are options for apartment housing also. It’s a great way to become more sustainable, as well as becoming more aware of the work and effort that goes into creating our food.
Where To Plant?
If you’ve never made a veggie garden before, now is the time! Whatever the size or shape of your section, you’ll find a place that can sustain a crop. The key is sunshine – veggies need sun to grow big and it enriches their flavour. A north-east spot is usually prefered, but it’s up to you to observe where the main hours of sunlight usually fall on your property.
If you don’t have much of a section, no worries! Herbs and even some vegetables and fruits can be grown in self-contained pots that flourish on patios and balconies provided they get enough sunlight. Tomatoes are a great potted crop, as well as strawberries and herbs such as basil, rosemary and thyme.
What To Plant?
From spring, the soil is generally warm enough to support any crop. Think about the vegetables you use most in cooking, as well as the type of soil and sunlight you have. This downloadable vegetable planting planner gives specific times for each vegetable as well as the region so that you can make the right decision for your garden.
Some vegetables such as kale and zucchini will produce crops all through the summer, so they’re a good investment for the season. Others such as cucumbers can be pickled and stored, to ensure you have a supply of fresh veggies throughout the winter months.
It can take time to truly develop a green thumb, but the following tips will help you get the most of your crop.
- Prepare the soil. Sprinkle crushed lime over the surface and turn it through, and invest in a fertilizer or an organic rich top soil before planting. This will give your plants a real boost.
- Keep it watered. New Zealand can have quite dry, hot summers, and veggies need to have their thirst quenched to fully bloom.
- Pick at the right time. All vegetables have a “sweet spot” of when to harvest to get a decent sized veggie while maximising the amount that it can grow.
Now is the perfect time to get your spring vegetable garden ready to provide you with amazing crops for the rest of the summer season. Healthy, fresh and organic, home grown vegetables can’t be beat for value and satisfaction.
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