Fruit & Vegetable Garden
Let’s face it. Commercially grown produce isn’t getting any healthier or cheaper. Whether you live on an expansive homestead or come home to an urban dwelling, starting a fruit and vegetable garden is for everyone. Growing your own food is one of the best ways to begin a journey toward self-sustaining living.
The beauty of planting and tending your own fruit and vegetable garden is you can make it as distinctive as you are. Oh, the possibilities — tomatoes, lettuce, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, kale, onions, squash, watermelon, pumpkins … and let’s not forget strawberries. Who can resist the taste of sun-kissed strawberries, fresh from the vine? Growing strawberries is actually quite easy, and when you apply a layer of mulch before the first frost, you protect your strawberry plants for the next growing season.
While you’re at it, why not learn how to grow asparagus and how to grow peppers. These summertime classics add flavor and freshness to any grill-inspired meal. Interested in growing sweet corn? There are as many opinions on what makes a delectable tasting ear of sweet corn as there are silks on that ear. There are, however, some tried-and-true methods for gardeners who wish to seek sweet corn superiority.
If you are new to gardening, one of the hardest tasks is figuring out how much to plant to meet your needs throughout the growing season and beyond. Practice makes perfect, and if you end up with a bountiful harvest, why not establish simple homesteading partnerships and swap those green beans for a neighbor’s green apples. Sounds likes a win-win, right?
A good garden starts from the ground up. Nutrient-rich soil is the bedrock for any successful garden. One way to build the right soil for your garden is to learn how to compost at home. Compost returns organic matter to the soil in a usable form. Organic matter in the soil improves plant growth by stimulating the growth of beneficial microorganisms, loosening heavy clay soils to allow better root penetration, and improving the capacity of the soil to hold water and nutrients.
Good luck and happy gardening!
By: Anita Stone, North Carolina
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