Though it’s the end of January and there’s snow on the ground, should you start to think about planting your vegetable garden?
Here are some tips to help you.
Decide what you would like to grow, how much space you have and purchase seeds. We prefer heirloom seeds that are open pollinated and can be saved for the next years’ planting.
Consider square metre gardening (or square foot gardening) for ease of maintenance and also allows you to grow more in a small space. See our Chelsea raised garden.
If you already have a garden or if you want to start a garden, you need to consider crop rotation each year to help keep vegetables healthy, increase yields and avoid pests.
For example: Year 1, Bed #1 Legumes (beans, peas), Bed #2 Alliums (onions, garlic, leeks, scallions), Bed #3 Roots (radish, carrots, potatoes, beets), Bed #4 Gourds (squash, pumpkin, zucchini), Bed #5 Nightshades (tomatoes, peppers, potatoes), Bed #6 Brassicas (broccoli, cauliflower, kale, brussel sprouts, cabbage, turnip).
As an example, Year 2, Bed #6 Brassicas will now be planted in Bed #1. The reason for this is Brassicas require a lot of nitrogen because it’s a leafy crop and legumes replenish the soil with nitrogen. Bed #5 Nightshades will now be planted in Bed #6 Brassicas and so on.
Think about interplanting herbs and flowers as companion plants. This will support the theory of the two fold anatomy of intensive gardening concept. Along with creating an insectary for beneficial insects. these companion plants will help to attract pollinators, they are a natural pest control, they enhance flavour and colour and will maximize space in your garden. Although there is snow on the ground and it’s January, this is the week we will start to germinate our geraniums and lavender as part of our companion plant arsoneau.
Other herbs and flowers will be started in February….stay tuned.
I think I’ll go pull some leeks from our garden and along with the potatoes we grew, see if my wife will make her delicious leek and potato soup.
….until next week