Tuesday, March 2, 2010

10 Step process to create a Vegetable Garden Plan

Winter rolls around and you're stuck inside in the northwest, maybe if you're lucky it's a warm winter like this year. What does a gardener do? She gets out her trusty "Growing Vegetables West of the Cascades", grabs a notebook, and heads for a coffee shop to plan out the 2010 vegetable garden over a chai tea.

10 Step Process

  • Step 1: Identify all the vegetables you want to grow
  • Step 2: Figure out when they should be planted and get an idea of when they will mature. If you want more lettuce throughout the summer, then plant it 3-4 weeks apart.
  • Step 3: How many of each of those do you want to grow? That's where notes from the previous years about how many hours you spent canning plums and green tomatoes comes in handy.
  • Step 4: Measure and draw a map of your vegetable gardens. There may be several spaces, like you see in ours. Figure out where you'd put paths for easy picking and where the best sun is. Remember to leave space, don't do what I did and sit on your green peppers while trying to get to the green beans.
  • Step 5: Get a pencil and eraser, you'll write and erase a lot.
  • Step 6: Start plotting the veggies in patches appropriate to their size. A head of lettuce will need less space than a potato plant. Of course the lettuce can be grown in batches.
  • Step 7: Reference your list of veggies to grow.
  • Step 8: Drink some chai and take a deep breath. Know you will not be able to fit all the veggies you want, so let a few go for next year.
  • Step 10: Sit back and wait for late February for your first peas to go in.
You may find our planting calendar handy for reference at the bottom of this page. It helps us remember when to set aside a weekend so the seeds and starts can go in.

Any steps you'd add? What vegetables have you had success with and when do you plant them?

You will find plums and likely melons added to our calendar.

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