Does a plant need a “green thumb” individual to make it grow? That is just a belief which is not always true because anyone can farm easy to grow vegetables as long as tender loving care is given to the plant. Some plant lovers even talk and sing to the plants. Caring is easy because it only involves rich soil, sufficient sunlight and enough water. In addition, ensure that no pests destroy them.
If you are a novice or a beginner in gardening veggies, you should start with easy to grow vegetables that would require little time and effort. There are some kinds of veggies that are suitable to beginning gardeners. And the best thing in this is that the easy to grow vegetables consist of veggies that you can have for everyday salads. You do not need to go to the supermarket to buy your salad greens, tomatoes and cucumbers. You can grow them in your backyard albeit you are not one with “green thumb”.
Lettuce and other salad greens are easy to grow vegetables.
To start a regular supply of fresh salad greens, consider planting and nurturing nutrient-rich lettuce. These leafy greens are very easy to grow and they can flourish in great abundance. As they require small space, they can be planted in containers, raised beds and backyard row gardens. You can choose from different varieties like Oak leaf, Romaine, Iceberg, Butterhead and Asparagus lettuce. Since these leafy greens are vegetables that grow fast and easily, you can harvest them every three weeks and will ensure that your table will always have a steady supply of salad every day.
Growing tomatoes for your daily salad
Tomatoes have many uses in cooking and are great ingredients for salads. They are easy to grow vegetables that can thrive in any size of garden and in any medium. You can grow them in containers, pots or even hanging baskets. What is required though is sufficient sunlight. The best varieties that go with lettuce for salads are the cherry tomatoes.
You can grow more tomatoes in a cage but they require less of your time and effort when they are grown in lesser quantity. Smallest work is needed when you plant the hybrid patio varieties. Maintenance of the plant is not very strict because forgetting to water them for a day would not affect the growth so much. In fact, some tomato growers’ tip is to make them taste better with less water.
Cucumbers are among the easiest to grow at the backyard.
Another vegetable in your everyday salad is cucumber. It may not come to your mind that this is one of the easy to grow vegetables at home. They can be grown using vertical gardening in your tiny space thus making them readily available for your everyday salad. They grow abundantly so when you pick the fruits, you can store them in the refrigerator’s vegetable chiller and use them for other purposes aside from being an ingredient in your everyday salad. Freshly cut, they can be a beauty product where they help eliminate eye bags.
Aside from lettuce, tomatoes and cucumbers, there are more other easy to grow vegetables especially root crops like carrots, turnips and radishes. The salad vegetables as well as these root crops can be planted early in spring and they are abundant until fall season. Why not try growing green beans and zucchini too? They can also be among the easy vegetables to grow in your garden. Gaining expertise in the cultivation of these vegetables, how about growing them in commercial quantity?
Your gardening experiences tell that it is not easy to maintain a garden. There are factors affecting the growth and well-being of plants. Among them are right location, the amount of sunlight, the type of soil and more other factors that determine the growing capability of your plants. Some gardeners overlook or are not aware of the big influence of soil pH on garden soil.
What is garden soil pH?
The soil pH is a measure of how acidic or alkaline is the garden soil. The range of pH is based on a 1 to 14 scale where the soil is acidic if the pH is less than 7 and it is alkaline when the pH is greater than 7. A measure of 7 indicates that the soil is neutral, neither alkaline nor acidic.
You have to know the pH of your soil because this will tell you what plant is suitable to your garden soil. The pH affects the level of nutrients in the soil thus it affects the health of growing plant. Plants need nitrogen and phosphorous. If the soil has a pH of 5.5, nitrogen is available in the soil. When the pH is between 6 and 7, phosphorous is available. The best pH reading of the soil is 6 to 7 because this is the type of soil that has the needed nutrients. Lacking in the needed nutrients, the plant will be susceptible to diseases.
How to find the pH of garden soil
Finding the pH level of soil is not a problem for gardeners as test kits are available in most garden shops. The kit consists of a test tube or a small container, testing solution and color chart. A sample of the soil is placed on the test tube or container, a few drops of the testing solution is added. The mixture is shaken to produce color that has to be compared to the provided color chart.
There are plants that grow well in alkaline soil and there are those that thrive best when planted in acidic soil. If you already have chosen a plant whose growth does not conform to the pH of your soil, you can still remedy your situation. You can change the pH of the soil.
Increasing the soil’s pH
If your soil is acidic and you need to make it alkaline for your chosen plant, make it alkaline by increasing the soil’s pH. What you have to do is simply add a form of lime, a compound consisting of calcium and magnesium. The required kind of lime may be agricultural limestone, hydrated lime or burnt lime. If the particles of your lime are small, the soil will quickly increase in pH thus making it alkaline. Since hydrated lime is the smallest particles and is easy to dissolve in water, it has a quicker effect. It can easily permeate into the acidic soil to make it alkaline. You have to know that the conversion from acidic to alkaline does not occur overnight. Making the soil turn alkaline will require 2 to 3 months.
Decreasing the soil’s pH
A lot of ornamental and fruit-bearing plants thrive better in acidic soil. This means that your soil must have a pH of less than 7. Decreasing the garden soil’s pH makes it acidic and suitable for these types of plants. Making your soil acidic is adding aluminum sulfate or sulfur. Aluminum sulfate reacts faster. Soon as it is dissolved and applied to the soil, the pH of the soil goes down to become acidic. However, the drawback is that the acidity is not long lasting so you will be required to reapply ammonium sulfate.
Although ammonium sulfate reacts faster, sulfur is better recommended. Sulfur makes the soil acidic through the help of the bacteria in the earth. The length of conversion time is longer and the length of time depends on the presence of bacteria, soil texture and moisture.
In deciding to start a garden, your first step is to determine the pH of the garden soil. This will let you know the suitability of the plant you intend to grow. Even if not suitable, you can change an acid soil into alkaline soil or vice versa through application of lime, ammonium sulfate or sulfur, depending on the desired conversion.
Some areas in a country naturally have good garden soil for growing plants. Others lack necessary nutrients that are needed for healthy plant growth. This is natural difference that can be corrected. For small area, the texture of soil can be altered by changing the percentage of clay, silt and sand in the composition of the loam. But for large scale farming, this is hard to do. To be fertile, the soil should have sufficient amount of nutrients. With nutrient deficiency, soil must be treated with the NPK fertilizer.
Your fertilizers can be the commercial or the organic types. The former is nasty kind as it contains chemicals that are harmful to men. Today, many gardeners treat their soil with organic matters such as compost and manure.
Nutrients that must be present in garden soil
Three basic elements should be present in the garden soil. These are nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus, also known as the NPK mineral fertilizer. Other necessary nutrients that must be present in the soil are calcium, magnesium and sulfur. These mineral nutrients are needed in large quantity and they are categorized as macronutrients of the soil. The nutrients that are needed in smaller quantities are known as micronutrients. There are eight micronutrients that must also be present in your garden soil. These are manganese, iron, zinc, copper, boron, chlorine, molybdenum and nickel. These are also called trace elements.
There are other elements that are known as photosynthesis nutrients because they are necessary when plants undergo their food processing. These elements are oxygen, hydrogen and carbon. All these are essential nutrients and if one of these is lacking, the plants cannot grow too well.
Causes for lost of soil nutrients
The soil has the tendency to lose some of its nutrients. The soil gets depleted through overuse. The soil is not rested after harvest season causing the earth to decline in production. You will notice that after planting season, your harvest tend to decline. The soil has no more nutrients to sustain the growth of the plants.
In addition, there are crops that are heavy nutrient users. They consume more nutrients to deplete the soil faster. Examples of heavy soil nutrient users are corn, rice, sorghum and sweet potatoes. If there are heavy users, there are also plants that can be considered nutrient boasters. These crops contribute to availability of nutrients that are used by other plants.
Ways to replenish soil nutrients
There are effective ways to replenish the garden soil with the lacking nutrients.
• Bio-intensive gardening – This increases soil fertility when wastes and other garden grass cuttings are buried in the soil after harvesting the crops. These materials are left to decompose through microorganisms in the soil.
• Composting – Organic waste materials like garbage, crop and animal manure are left on the surface of the ground to decompose with the aid of soil microbes and bacteria. Garbage dumpsites had initiated composting methods and the resulting organic matters are sold and used in garden soil.
• Crop rotation – This method rotates the kinds of plants or crops planted in an area. Crops that deplete nutrients are alternated to boaster crops. After harvesting the crops, another kind of crops are planted on the same site.
• Cover cropping – This is also called living mulch. Other kinds of plants are planted in between regular main crops; these are the living mulch. This method does not only replenish garden soil nutrients; they also improve soil by controlling the growth of weeds and soil erosion. This will also help maintain the presence of organic elements in the soil.
Nutrients in garden soil can be depleted. When this happens, you cannot expect a healthy growth of the crops. However, there are ways to replenish the nutrients in the soil and eventually make the plants grow well for a good harvest.
What makes the plants grow? This is a very elementary question since we have learned this the very first time we had lessons about plant. Would you still need some garden tips on the growing needs of plants? You already learned the basic things to make plants grow. The plants need nutrients from the soil, water to transport the nutrients from the roots to the other plant parts and sun for photosynthesis or manufacture of plant foods. They do need air to take in carbon dioxide for photosynthesis.
You indeed know the basic things that make a plant grow. But there are more from the garden tips that you will read about. Plants grow under the right temperature, space sufficiency and time consideration.
Nutrient and water garden tips to make plants grow
Like other living creatures, plants need food and water in order to subsist. Human beings eat foods because they have to get nutrients; plants also need nutrients. You drink water and plants do need water. Plants utilize water to bring the moisture and the nutrients back and forth from the roots to the leaves, from the leaves to the roots also. Water as well as the nutrients is taken in by the roots from the soil. Garden tips tell us that we have to water the plants when the soil is already dry. Too much or too little water is harmful to the life and growth of any plant. So, garden tips tell you to water your plants moderately.
The nutrients come from the soil but in plenty of cases, the soil becomes depleted. There will be no enough nitrogen (N), phosphorous (P) and potassium (K) in the soil and if not replenished the plant would not achieve its full growth. You will then need to apply fertilizer on the soil to put in the NPK nutrients. Further data in the garden tips tell a gardener the uses of the NPK. Nitrogen is for greener and healthy leaves, phosphorus is for sturdy roots and big flowers or fruits and potassium is the shield of plants to fight diseases.
Air and soil as other needs of plants
Aside from sufficiency of nutrients and moderate watering of plants, this living creature also needs air. Plants do breath or respire through their pores. They take in carbon dioxide which they need in photosynthesis, plant’s process to manufacture food. Although it is the leaves that perform photosynthesis, other parts of the plants such as stem, roots and flowers also respire. It is not only carbon dioxide that is necessary for the plant to subsist. It also needs oxygen which is drawn by the roots from the air spaces in the soil.
Healthy soil is very paramount in the life cycle of any plant. In gardening, you have to learn the soil classifications. Different plants need different kinds of soil although the usual kind is the loam. Loam is created by the right proportion of clay, slit and sand. It is from the soil that the plant gets the nutrients. Thus, the soil must also be healthy and being healthy means having the NPK sufficiently in the ground. Lack of any of these will render the plant unhealthy. As the nutrients in the soil can be depleted due to soil overuse, the application of fertilizer is the method to replenish. Today, we try to do away with the commercial chemical fertilizers. Garden tips tell a gardener to learn to make compost as this is the way to provide organic nutrients to plants. With a small garden to tend, animal or crop manure will be good substitute for compost. You mix these into the soil or you can just top your soil’s surface and leave the ground microorganism or bacteria to convert the raw manure into decomposed nutrient.
Space, time, temperature and light as factors in plant growth
Space is also a factor in the growth of plants. According to garden tips, overcrowded plants can suffer from plant diseases. The airflow is restricted to hamper growth such that plants become small and stunted. Keep distance from one plant to another.
It takes time for plants to grow. Some require more number of days to become mature enough for the flowering stage to commence. Plants need the sunlight; it is through the sun’s heat that plants manufacture their food. Sun is the source of plant’s energy. Finally, temperature is considered in most garden tips. There are plants that need cooler temperature and there are those that live well during the summer season. However, the rule of thumb is that plants grow best during spring. The temperature during this time is the best for most varieties and species of plants.
Technological innovations had been implemented in agriculture and aquaculture. Plants are no longer exclusively grown in soil. Experiment on easy to grow vegetables were tested and among those that can be grown through the indoor hydroponic system are leafy greens. This is very beneficial if you have very limited space for planting vegetables.
What is hydroponics? This is the method of growing plants sin use of soil and instead, they are submerged in nutrient-rich water. This method had been proved to be effective in farming a wide array of vegetables, herbs and other plant types. However, not all plants can be cultivated with this method. Most plants that are found suitable to grow hydroponically are likewise suitable to more advanced hydroponic method known as aquaponics. With this method, the hydroponic is combined with aquaculture, the raising of aquatic animals like fish. Grown together in the same environment, a symbiotic relationship exists between the planted plants and raised fish. The plant supplies food to the fish while the waste of the fish serves as fertilizer to the plant. What an amazing product of man’s ingenuity!
With hydroponics, the plant needs three things, namely water or moisture, nutrients and oxygen. There are different kinds of systems and the one suitable to beginners is the raft hydroponic system for easy to grow vegetables.
Raft hydroponic system and easy to grow vegetables
For a novice in hydroponic technology, the raft system is the advisable method. This is also known as “deep water culture” or “lettuce raft”. This is a perfect method for beginners as it is easy to construct and it does not cost too much. In fact, this makes you harvest more quickly than through the conventional gardening. In choosing the vegetable, see to it that the variety can survive excessive moisture and that it does not grow too big to overload the raft.
The concept behind this system is very simple to follow. You merely allow easy to grow vegetables to be planted in a raft that is made of rigid Styrofoam. This raft will float in nutrient rich pool of water. The raft consists of the reservoir, the aerator and the raft. The reservoir is the container of the water and the Styrofoam raft has to fit into this. The aerator functions to circulate the nutrients in the water.
Lettuce as best vegetable to grow hydroponically
The system is commonly referred to as “lettuce raft” simply because lettuce is the best choice of easy to grow vegetables that survive in the raft hydroponic. The lettuce does not require too much attention. When the outer leaves are big, you can harvest them. The inner leaves will grow fast to replace the harvested leaves. You then will have a continuous supply of the green leaves. You can plant different varieties to provide you with a variety of lettuce harvest. The most common though for this gardening method are Romaine and Bibb varieties. In this water culture, you do not plant seeds, you plant seedlings. Before you submerge in water, ensure that the roots of the seedlings are already long enough to reach the water they are planted in otherwise you seedlings will die.
Other leafy greens suitable to hydroponic farming
The raft hydroponic gives you pleasure of experimentation with other green leafy easy to grow vegetables. Just like lettuce, spinach is adaptable to hydroponic gardening. Planting spinach this way lets you avoid the presence of sandy grit in it. You can snip the needed quantity and leave the plant to keep growing and producing the nutritious leaves. But here is a precaution. Do not let them grow too big for your raft because the plants will be overcrowded to lack needed air circulation.
As there is enough room to experiment on other leafy easy to grow vegetables, you can also try your “green thumb” with kale, aragula, chard and mustard greens. All these greens are nutrient-filled to provide you a healthy diet. Actually, you can experiment on many lightweight crops using the hydroponic technology. Herbs like parsley, chives, basil are also good options. What you just have to bear in mind is to avoid heavy plants like melons, beans, tomatoes and cucumbers. You do not only grow vegetables through this method, you can also have a water garden of flowering plants.
A not so perfect garden soil can still be improved; the solution to sticky clay soil or gritty sandy soil is the addition of substantial amount of organic matter. While it is true that you cannot change the kind of soil in your garden into loam soil, adding organic matter can improve your soil in several ways.
Organic matter can loosen the sticky clay soil to make the air flow. As for sandy soil, the addition of organic matter will enable the loose soil to improve its capacity to retain and hold nutrients and water. Organic matter will be an attraction to micro-organisms such as fungi, critters and worms and the end result is improving the health of the plants. The organic matter is non-chemical fertilizers such as animal or green manure and compost. You can add these to the soil while still in decomposition stage, possibly a month before planting. The matter will break down and would be ready at planting time.
Basic steps to add organic matter to the garden soil
The process of adding organic matter to the garden soil is very simple. The organic matter layered on the surface of the soil should be 1 to 2 inches thick. If your soil is new or is to be used for the first time, go for the 2 inch-layering. You should also use this amount if the soil is clay or sandy. If it is loam, you can settle for lesser organic topping. If you have been planting on the soil for quite some time, there are nutrients in the soil so an inch topping will also suffice. You do some gardening tools to layer and spread the organic matter. You need to use wheelbarrow, shovel or iron fork.
Adding compost to the soil
The best kind of organic material to improve the quality of the garden soil is compost. This is actually humus made by breaking down yard and agricultural waste and scraps of wood or timber into soil-like particles. If you cannot do the composting, you will find this organic matter from waste disposal sites. You can buy by bags or by truckloads. When buying compost from disposal sites, you have to ensure that no heavy metals like lead are made part of the compost. This may not be safe for your vegetable’s soil. Today, many commercial producers of compost can even tell you the nutrient content of the compost they are selling. This is because they know the components of this organic fertilizer.
Adding sawdust and manure soil
Other types of organic materials are sawdust and manure. The latter can come from animal or plants. Compost is better recommended as organic additions to garden soil because there may be some problems in sawdust and manure.
• Sawdust may add organic materials to the soil when they breakdown to form humus. However, the sawdust may take some of the nitrogen during the decomposition stage. As a result, you will need to add more to compensate for what had been taken off.
• Animal or livestock manure also adds nitrogen to the garden soil. However, since the diet of livestock include hay, the seeds of hay may be integrated which later germinates into the vegetable plot. Horse manure for instance has dried hay bedding materials that produce similar disadvantage of sawdust.
• Green manure is from leaves and branches of trees and plants. They can be sowed into the garden soil and once they breakdown, they release nutrients into the garden’s earth. However, before you sow them into the soil, you have to wait until the garden beds had been emptied for 5 to 6 weeks.
When you use manure, you have to use the kind that had been sitting around for 1 or 2 years to ensure that they have totally decomposed and that their salt content had already leached out. Salt is harmful to your plant; this is the reason why you have to wait long before you use the mature. Using either compost or manure, you can determine if it is good quality. If it is color brown with earthy smell, it may be a good one. Look at the particles, the original material from which it is made from is no longer visible. No traces of wastes, manure and sawdust are found in the resulting organic materials. It shows more resemblance to a good kind of garden soil.
There are different kinds of gardens that can be set up in your home; you can have a flower or vegetable garden. Although the herb garden falls under the vegetable garden type, there are different reasons for establishing herb garden in one’s home. Having this indoors or outdoors, the herb garden can be your source of medical remedies and culinary needs or it is simply decorative in your kitchen window sill or vertical garden.
Your garden tips will always emphasize that the planning stage is the most critical. If you do not plan it right, there is a big chance that your herb garden project is a disaster. But planning correctly and ahead of planting time, you will find things to fall into proper place. You will smell the exotic fragrance of basil, cinnamon, mint and others forming a special kind of scented garden.
There are different designs for the herb garden. You can plant different kinds in small pots and place them in the window sill of your kitchen. You can have a small herb garden where you plant different herbs in one big pot. If you want a formal herb garden, you will have a precise design that may include proper landscaping. Whatever is our desired design, your search for garden tips will center on soil or ground, garden location and size.
Garden tips on soil and ground condition
A novice in herb gardening will search for black, hearty and nutrient-rich soil. Garden tips will tell you that this is not so because herbs are comparable to weeds such that they can grow in any type of soil and environment. They will surely flourish in soils where other plants would not. However, it is always a good idea to make your soil fertile by adding natural organic matter like compost. Going organic is beneficial to your health if you use them for culinary purposes because they are chemical-free. Your organic herbs will not only smell good but your harvests will have a perfect taste too.
Location of the garden
As for location garden tips, it is your decision as to where you want the herb garden to be. If you intend to use the herbs regularly in your cooking expedition, the best location would be near the kitchen. Bear in mind that when they are frequently called for in your recipes, have them as nearly as possible to your kitchen or at least it is accessible easily through the kitchen.
There are other herb garden tips. You have to consider the chosen location relative to sunlight. Most herbs need to be exposed to the sun’s rays but you must never forget that they should not be placed under direct sunlight for too long. It is best that your herb garden will be under partial shade in the afternoon.
Size of the garden
As these plants do not really grow very robust and high, 6 to 10 square foot area will already suffice to supply you with fresh herbs for the whole growing season. When planning this garden, you also have to remember again that herbs are like weeds in that they tend to spread out fast. So early on, determine how big you want your herb space to be.
Did you know that following these garden tips will make your herb garden a good part of your home? But as you start setting it up, you must ensure that you have planned well and that you have considered its location, size and soil type.
Do you plan to have a flower garden in front of your house? Or perhaps you want to make use of your backyard and start a small vegetable garden where you can harvest some leafy greens for your salads. Adhering to some garden tips, you can end up with an impressive garden.
The most useful garden tips are about the right soil to plant in, the supply of water to the plants and the available space on which the plants can grow. In addition to these garden tips, you should also be aware of the timing for the planting. Most plants, whether they are flowers or vegetables, are seasonal that require specific range of environmental temperature. Some plants can tolerate frost and would survive the winter season. But most flowers and vegetables would not live during the winter period.
Garden tips on right garden soil for vegetable farming.
Going back to the basic tips, start learning about the right garden soil. If you want your flowering and fruit-bearing plants to become productive, your garden soil should be suitable to the chosen specie. Some plants need acidic soil and some thrives better in alkaline soil. Some kinds of garden soil do not contain the necessary nutrients.
One of the garden tips is for you to know the basic nutrients needed by your plants. These are nitrogen (N), Phosphorus (P) and potassium (K). You will come across NPK fertilizer for the plants and this simply stands for the three basic nutrients.
• Nitrogen is the nutrient necessary for the development of vigorous stem and leaves. Manure is the organic matter that is best source of nitrogen.
• Phosphorus is the nutrient that is essential for the roots of the plants. This is also the nutrient that enhances the flowering and fruit development. A source is rock phosphate.
• Potassium aids in development of strong stems; also enhances cell division and good fruit quality. It helps the plant fight diseases. Good sources are manure and compost.
Water the garden appropriately and in moderation.
The next of the garden tips is on water supply and watering time. Fruit-bearing vegetables need sufficient water during flower and fruit development stages. Examples of such plants are tomatoes, pumpkin, water melons, eggplants and more. For root crops like turnips, beets, carrots and sweet potatoes, they need a steady supply of water when their roots are developing. For lettuce, cabbage, cauliflower abundant water is needed when their heads or leaves are developing. Other veggies like radishes, kale, mustard greens need water all through their life cycle. You have to take note of these garden tips on plant watering as excessive water can drown the plants or can create molds around them.
Give your plants enough room to grow.
Last important garden tip pertains to the spacing in between plants. You have to provide your plant with room to grow. Do not plant them too close together otherwise they will be too crowded and may lack the nutrients. The plants will tend to overtake the growing of the nearby plants. And if you are planting dissimilar plants close to each other, there is a tendency for them to become hybrids of each other.
These basic garden tips can help you achieve a fabulous and impressive flower and vegetable garden. The tips actually apply to almost all kinds of plants. You have to know the plant’s soil and water requirements. Then ensure that they have enough space to fully grow.
The texture of the garden soil determines its type, which is just a description of the percentage of clay, silt and sand in the loam. Because of the difference in the percentage of each component, you have different variations of loam. Improving your soil for gardening brings out the best performance of the plants grown in it.
The main types of garden soil are clay, silt and sand. The best soil texture or loam is the right combination of these three. You can just add any of these three kinds to alter the texture of your soil. But on a large scale, this will be a very tedious job. In lieu of altering the combination, soil improvement is done through the addition of liberal amount of organic matter to the existing earth.
Organic matter improves the fertility of the soil. Furthermore, it will aid the drainage structure of clay and silt soils. If your garden soil is sandy, the organic matter will help in water retention. Let us analyze each of the three types of soil and some practical ways to improve them.
Clay for your garden soil
Clay soil is compact because it is composed of numerous mineral particles. The compact structure limits the air space such that water is retained in the soil. It is sticky and hardens during summer. This kind of soil is very fertile however the drawback is that the nutrients tend to be locked in it. This is where improvements need to be done.
Your clay soil is very hard during summer and very sticky during the wet months of spring and winter. The best time to add organic matter to your soil is during autumn. You simply dig clods of clay, break them and add organic matter in the form of well-rotten animal manure, compost or green manure. Another method of adding organic matter is merely spreading 5 to 10 centimeters of the organic fertilizer on top of the clay soil surface and let the worms incorporate the fertilizing matter. Never add sand to the clay soil. Be selective on the choice of plants as there are plant species that cannot thrive on clay soil albeit it is already fertilized and improved.
Silt soil for your garden
Another kind of soil is the silt. These have bigger particles when compared to clay but this still is compact. Although this is free-draining of water, it still holds some of the moisture. Like the clay, it can be molded into shape but it is smoother and less sticky. When the soil is wet, do not walk on it as like the clay it sticks to your feet; your weight will have an impact on the soil structure.
Silt soil improvement is best to do during spring or autumn. You can fork into the soil or spread over the surface liberal amount of organic matter.
Gardening with sandy soil
The third soil type that forms part of loam garden soil is the sandy soil. It has too big particles making it super free-draining. There are big air spaces in between its particles. It cannot be molded into shape and when you walk over the soil, it is gritty and light. It dries out easily and because the nutrients are easily washed away, it is the least fertile kind of garden soil.
The secret to improving sandy soil is to integrate a big amount of organic matter in it; this closes the spaces in between the particles. This will bind the soil better which eventually is beneficial in improving retention of water and nutrient. When planted on, you can add munch around the plants in the form of layers of organic matter or layers of decorative pebbles, rocks, stone chips or gravel. Spring and autumn are likewise the best season work on sandy soil.
The best kind of garden soil is the loam which contains the right proportion of clay, silt and sand put together. You can do the soil texture alteration but not when you are working on a large scale. If the area to be planted in is too huge, the addition of organic matter is the solution to improve the quality and fertility of the garden soil.
Living in the metropolis where you take residence in apartments or townhouses, you are constrained to have your little garden of easy to grow vegetables. There is no space for your gardening; this is what you think so you believe growing the vegetables is impossible. This is no longer true as you can develop to become an urban gardener. In fact, vegetables can be grown anywhere with modern farming technology.
When you are space-challenged, one of the methods to cultivate easy to grow vegetables in the city is via a vertical garden. You only need to have a bare vertical space such as fence or house exterior wall. Do not think that you are supposed to grow climbing vegetables. You can grow a variety of veggies for your everyday cooking needs. You just need garden rack, the size of your space and pieces of wooden planks to frame the garden rack. You can plant the vegetables in pots or any container and hang these on the rack, vertically.
Types of vertical gardens to plant easy to grow vegetables
Almost any easy to grow vegetables can be cultivated in this vertical garden. The different styles for growing veggies vertically are shelves, hanging baskets and trellises.
• Shelves – Growing the vegetables in containers, you can arrange the shelves as high as the available space allows. You just have to ensure that the plants will receive adequate sunlight. You can make use of any kind of container but the best ones are those that have slats. These kinds of planter medium will allow air circulation and dripping of excess water. You may just have to concentrate on watering the uppermost shelves and the water from the top will drip down to the lower shelves.
• Hanging baskets – These sorts of containers are better left hanging in the balcony, veranda, porch or other suitable hangers. In fact, you can place them on tree branches or posts as long as they are able to receive sufficient sunlight for their growing needs. Hanging basket method tends to dry out immediately so you have to ensure that your easy to grow vegetables are regularly supplied with their needed water. There are different kinds of veggies that are suitable to hanging basket cultivation.
• Trellises – This method is used for vine crops like squash and bitter gourd. A fence can also serve as trellis. You can even place a ladder inclined to an empty wall to make this your trellis.
Most plants grow well with abundance of sunlight. But then, there are also those that can thrive with just minimal amount. As an urban gardener, you have to be aware of what kinds of plant to grow when your available space receives sufficient sunlight. In the absence of sunlight sufficiency, you can still plant your easy to grow vegetables as there are those that grow without high amount of sunlight.
Vegetables grown with abundant sunlight
Of course you have more choices of vegetables to plant when your space has lots of sunlight. Your choices are tomatoes, beans, radishes, peppers, carrots and potatoes. The peppers and the cherry tomatoes can be planted in hanging baskets. You can also grow the trailing plants like squash or pumpkin.
Types of vegetables suitable to shady area
Vegetables that can grow well with subdued sunlight are leafy veggies. You can then plant lettuce, cabbage and other greens when there is insufficiency of the sun rays. For instance, if your residence is surrounded by buildings such that you patio or terrace is shaded most of the day, you can choose these plants as they grow well in shaded areas.
You can be creative and have a vertical garden in your surroundings. You do not need a big space for your easy to grow vegetables. You can adapt the vertical gardening where you choose your style from shelves, hanging baskets or trellises.