Getting ready to garden? Part 1 – Why I garden the way I do.

So, you want to have a garden. There are many ways you can grow produce, ranging from hanging baskets to acres upon acres of crops. I myself started with a 20ft x 40ft area that produced well, moved to a 20ft by 20ft area that was horrible, and then amended the soil in my new spot so that it now does pretty well.

Do not think I grow all of our produce for the year in that 400 sqft. For now, I have self seeding onions and garlic set year-round. To that I add tomatoes, peppers, squash, lettuce, various greens, and a couple varieties of legumes every year. Getting fresh produce out of your garden is a wonderful thing, but my garden has been a test bed for the past two seasons.

I’ve had consistent success with jalapeno peppers, but I haven’t found tomatoes or beans that consistently produced well. I have also had a terrible time with insects of all shapes, genus, and species attacking my squash. I have successfully sprouted and transplanted my own harvested tomato seeds, which is wonderful as it saves the money of buying seeds.

You may have had luck with many varieties of vegetables, and never experienced any issues. It’s hard to start a garden and not have much success with it. I have had my share of frustration, but I make sure that I learn from my successes and failures. Tailoring your planting to what grows well and what you like is really one of the most important aspects of the process. Some vegetables don’t grow well and some are more likely to get attacked by insects. That’s why I experiment. I am learning what grows in my soil, and what to add to increase production. Having a garden is hard work, but you get back what you put in.