Choosing Vegetables to Grow in Your Garden
If you’re just getting started on choosing vegetables to grow in your garden, you may feel a little lost. You’re certainly not alone. The shear volume of vegetables is enough to make your head spin.
A Million Vegetables
One way to make thing a little less confusing is looking at vegetables by groupings. For example, leafy vegetables are exactly like they sound – these are your spinach, lettuce, chard, and Kale. By comparison fruiting vegetables include things like peppers, peas, cucumbers and the ever-popular tomato. Among root vegetables we find carrot, potatoes, radishes and onions. There are also root plants that most people consider herbs (garlic, horseradish, ginger) that might appear in a vegetable garden alongside things like mushrooms.
If we compare these groupings in terms of needs, the fruiting vegetables fare best in full sunlight. The leafy vegetables and root vegetables (along with some herbs) tolerate some shade. Nonetheless, all of these groups require well-drained soil for success. With that in mind, take a good look at your yard. Is there a space with enough light for a vegetable garden? Does water pool up in that space? If you have the room but drainage issues, you can overcome that through various remedial steps including container gardening or raised bed garden – so you can still start seriously considering choosing vegetables to grow in your garden.
Generally speaking the easiest way to choose is by personal taste. Unless you’re planning to give away a lot of produce, it makes sense to grow what you can use, or what you can eat and preserve.
Considerations for Container Gardens
Besides what you like to eat, if you’re container gardening with your vegetables make sure you get large enough pots for fully-grown plants, and ones that offer proper drainage. Avoid black containers as the heat in the soil can prove too much for sensitive growing roots. Because containers come in nearly every size, remember to put them down where you want them to stay. They’re down-right heavy when filled. Alternatively put your containers on rolling surface for ease of movement.
Plants suited to container gardens include beets, greens, peppers, onion, and small variety tomatoes. If you can find miniature cultivars, those need less space, but may not give you the desired yield.
Another factor in choosing vegetables to grow in your garden is the overall reality of your life. The more vegetables you grow, the more work it makes through the season. Yes, this also means a larger harvest – but if you don’t have time to weed and fertilize, prune and pluck – it’s unlikely you have time for preserving. It would be a shame to waste the efforts of your labors, so think seriously about how much time you can invest and still manage your other responsibilities.
There’s no question that vegetable gardening can be a great hobby, and it’s one you can pass down to your children. Get out in the sun and make a garden that grows vibrant and long. As plants mature, harvest at will and enjoy the unparalleled flavor of FRESH.