Thinking of growing a veggie garden? With September comes spring, and springtime brings crisp good weather with the promise of warmth to come. What better opportunity is there to invest in a new hobby and enjoy the outdoors! Make the most of the spring with us & enjoy your independent senior living in Auckland completely.
So, whether you’re planning a large outdoor veggie garden or starting a little garden in a pot or container, here are a few tips to get started!
1. Choose the right location
The first step to creating a successful veggie garden is choosing the right location! If you have an adequate outdoor garden space to use, make sure that it is a friendly space where your vegetables will flourish. Here are four of the most important things to determine:
1.Sunny location. Choose a location that has good access to light throughout the day (at least 6 hours). A location with good natural lighting means you can grow just about anything. If your vegetable area is often shaded, not to worry! Planting cool-season vegetables (e.g. lettuce, spinach, root veggies) in these areas is a great way to utilise the space.
2.Check your soil. Having good-quality soil to plant your veggies in makes all the difference. If your soil has poor drainage, then come wet season your veggies will probably drown. To prevent this, consider planting a raised veggie bed to keep them high and dry.
3.Remove stones and rocks. If rocks and stones are intermixed in your soil, make sure to till it before planting your seeds. Rocky soil can make it more difficult for deep-rooted plants to grow and can damage your tools when gardening.
4.Choose a stable environment. Somewhere that is not too windy or in danger of foot traffic or flooding is the best location. Also, it is good to be aware that some vegetables require pollination to grow (e.g. cucumber, zucchini, squash, pumpkin, swedes), while others are self-pollinating (tomatoes, chilli peppers, capsicums, eggplants, green beans, etc.). Therefore, if your veggie garden does not have access to bees and other insect pollinators, or wind pollination, then stick to self-pollinating veggies.
If you don’t have access to a garden space with a good layout as listed above, not to worry! Almost any vegetable can be grown in pots and containers, so long as they have adequate room to grow and good drainage.
2. Choose your vegetable seeds
Once you’ve chosen the right location, it’s time to pick your vegetables – or more accurately, choose the seeds! Here are a few things to consider when deciding which veggies to plant.
1.Choose what you’ll enjoy. When choosing, make sure to choose the veggies you like the most and will use most often.
2.Choose for the season. If spring is in the air, choose vegetables that grow best in cool weather. If you’re planning a summer garden, then go for warm-season vegetables. For help deciding which veggies you’d like to grow, explore this handy planting calendar guide and get the best veggies year-round!
3.Choose high-quality seeds. It’s best to invest in high-quality seeds for your garden to give your garden the best chance of germinating and growing a luscious crop.
3. How to arrange your veggies
Before you start planting, here are a few tips to consider for arranging your veggies!
1.Plant for the season. This will give you the best results as your veggies will be growing in optimal conditions.
2.Plant your tall veggies on the north side of the garden. This means you won’t be blocking your shorter plants from the light. Alternatively, if you have a lot of shaded areas, you can plant cool-season vegetables there.
3.Crops will mature at different rates. Consider that some vegetables mature quickly (e.g. radishes, bush beans), while others (such as tomatoes) take longer to fully develop.
4.Stagger your seed plantings. Remember, if you plant all your cabbages at the same time, they’ll need to be harvested all at once. To prevent having to eat cabbage seven days a week, try staggering them and planting them in batches every few weeks to reap the benefits of your crops throughout the season.
4. Garden maintenance
After your garden is complete, a little regular garden maintenance is the best way to ensure healthy, luscious vegetation all year round. Firstly, make sure the garden is weeded weekly and watered wisely. If the weather has been dry, make sure the soil doesn’t dry out, and in wet weather, make sure your veggies are not soggy and dowsed in too much water. An excellent option is to add mulch around the base of the plants; this will not only help the soil retain moisture and prevent weeds from growing, it will also help protect them against disease, insulate the soil in winter, and cool it in summer.
Enjoy springtime opportunities in Lifestyle retirement
We wish you the best gardening experience this season! If you’re looking to settle down and start a fresh chapter of your life in retirement properties in Auckland, talk to us! As one of the best lifestyle retirement villages in the country, we offer excellent housing options for seniors. Explore our apartments, townhouses, and villas, and register your interest with us today.