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Gardening Tips for Beginners

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Whether you have a green thumb or not, these helpful gardening tips for beginners will get you on your way to growing a great fruit and vegetable garden this year.

Gardening Tips for Beginners

Getting Started: How to Grow Vegetables From Seeds or From Plants

Starting From Seeds

If you'd like to start from the source—the seed itself—follow these gardening tips for beginners to get your garden up and going:

  1. Buy pots and planting soil.
  2. Depending on the vegetable, prepare your seeds by soaking them. When they look swollen, they are ready to be planted. The moisture helps them to grow better. Make sure to not soak them too long (several hours or over night should be long enough).
  3. Plant in May and keep indoors for 1 month in the window where they will get sunshine before transferring outdoors.
  4. Water daily until the soil is damp. Do not over water.
  5. After 1 month, transfer to an outdoor garden.
  6. Follow the steps below on where and when to plant and how to tend to your garden.

Note: The best plants to start from seeds include cucumbers, peppers, pumpkins, squash, and tomatoes.

Starting From Plants

If you are open to starting your garden from plants you buy at your local nursery, follow these simple gardening tips for beginners to get on your way to a hearty vegetable garden:

  1. Buy the plants from your local nursery.
  2. Keep the root ball in tact when transferring from the plant container to your garden.
  3. Follow the steps below on where and when to plant and how to tend to your garden.

Note: The best fruits and vegetables to start from plants include beans, beets, carrots, lettuce, potatoes, radishes, and spinach. I also prefer starting tomatoes from plants, but it is really personal preference.

Gardening Tips for Beginners: Growing Your Vegetables

Regardless of whether you started your fruits and vegetables from seeds or plants, follow these gardening tips for beginners to grow a hearty garden all summer long:

  1. Find a sunny place in your yard that is protected from pets or other disturbances and section it off for your garden.
  2. Till, plow, and turn over the dirt.
  3. Add fertilizer and soil enhancer after plowing if the dirt needs it.
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    Tip! Your local nursery or university often will do a soil analysis at no charge, which can help you determine whether you need fertilizer or soil enhancer. Take advantage of that service when preparing your garden for the first time.
  4. Wait for the soil to heat up (when there is no risk of it freezing).
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    Tip! Historical records will tell you when the best time to plant in your region is. Access those to take the guess work out of gardening. If the ground is ready, but it is still cold outside, consider covering fragile plants, like tomatoes. We use milk containers to create a green house effect, for example.
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  5. Gardening Tips for Beginners When the soil is ready, plan your garden by deciding what you want to plant and visualizing how much each fruit or vegetable will spread. For example, carrots need very little space and hardly spread at all while pumpkins and yellow squash have a 4-5 foot radius and require a lot of space.
  6. When the vegetables are all planted, either from seed or from plants, sprinkle your garden daily lightly and keep damp until the plants sprout.Tip! Sprinkle carrots with water twice daily.
  7. Weed your garden regularly as weeds compete for both the nutrients and water that your fruit and vegetables need. They also grow faster and bigger, so keeping on top of removing weeds is key to a healthy garden.

Following these gardening tips for beginners is easy and will lead to a hearty and healthy garden and a summer full of delicious salads... at least that is what I do with my bountiful vegetables!

Enjoy!

Gardening Tips for Beginners

What are your top spring planting tips when it comes to preparing a vegetable garden?

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