Tips for First-time Food Gardeners

You don't have to be a gardening wiz to grow delicious, sustainable vegetables

For optimal results, remember not to overcrowd your garden. Let your plants breathe and you will succeed

If you’re a novice food gardener looking to add a little green to your life, these tips will help you

Just getting started in the garden, but not quite sure where to begin? Follow these tips and kickstart your life as a green thumb.

Suggestions For a Successful Garden

  • Enthusiastic folks are chomping at the bit, sometimes sowing seeds too early for good results. Consult a source that lists correct planting times and stick to them
  • Adhere to suggested distances between plants. Your garden will seem bare at first, but by June it will be full. Crowded plants do not produce properly
  • It’s helpful to use at least some purchased transplants of broccoli, squash, pumpkins, tomatoes and other garden favourites. Who can resist all those baby plants?
  • To first grow from seed, stick to easy veggies: peas, beans (warm soil please – use your elbow like bathwater for babies), mesclun (mixed) for scissor harvest, arugula, mache, plus the easiest Asian greens like mizuna, ‘Giant Red’ mustard, and mibuna
  • Plants you can use for long periods of time make sense. Kale, for example, which overwinters in many zones; ditto leeks, and sometimes Swiss chard
  • Squash in bush form won’t sprawl willy-nilly; dare to grow big rambling pumpkins or squash in a sunny front yard in large pots, grow bags, or amongst annuals
  • ‘Ronde de Nice’ zucchini makes a smallish bush, while ‘Romanesco’ and other regular types take up a ton of space