In which direction should rows of vegetable gardens run

Vegetable growing: 10 tips for beginners

Is every beginning difficult? It doesn't have to be. We'll show you the most important tips and tricks for creating your first vegetable patch.

Have you been thinking about creating a vegetable garden for a long time? Then let's go! Vegetable gardens are a great way to grow healthy vegetables cheaply, are fun, and look great too. You don't need a huge plot of land, because there are also vegetables that are suitable for pot cultivation and that can be grown on the smallest balcony. And so that the beginning is not that difficult, we give you ten good tips for creating your own vegetable garden with you on the way.

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Tip 1 for growing vegetables: the right variety

It is particularly important for beginners in the bed to choose the right types of plants. To start with, robust and easy-care varieties that can withstand one or the other mistake without shrinking are best. This includes almost all salads, radishes, beans, peas and onions. But zucchini or carrots are also relatively easy to grow in your own garden. The best varieties are those that you like to eat yourself: if you can look forward to your favorite food, gardening is twice as much fun. However, you shouldn't overestimate yourself. Start with a small selection of varieties, and if you like it, you can grow your garden year after year.

Tip 2 for growing vegetables: The location is crucial

The next important step is the choice of the location. Above all, it is important whether the plants get enough sunlight, so shady forests are rather unsuitable. But protection from strong winds and frost can also play a decisive role in the good growth of plants. If you grow your plants in pots, you should pay attention to the orientation of your balcony: South is ideal. Also consider the distance to your house or the nearest water connection - long distances can be difficult, especially in the high season. The following also applies here: It's better to start small. A few rows or a small raised bed are much more suitable for beginners and, with good care, can bring just as much yield as a poorly maintained, large garden.

Tip 3 for growing vegetables: bed, row or something completely different?

Vegetable gardens come in hundreds of different designs, but which one is right for beginners? Most of them are traditionally familiar with planting in rows: a long row is laid out for each variety, and there is a small walkway between the rows. This method is supported by the fact that the beds are very tidy and clear. However, this arrangement also takes up a lot of space and is therefore more suitable for larger gardens. For beginners, it is worth creating individual beds with walkways in between, in which different types of vegetables can grow next to each other. This reduces the space required and the work - but you should find out beforehand which plants are suitable as bed neighbors. The option of a raised bed is also recommended for beginners: Not only is the bed space-saving and clearly larger, it is also easy on the back and knees when working.

Tip 4 for growing vegetables: Preparation is a must - even with the soil

If you have never had a vegetable patch in your garden, you should first find out about the nature of your soil. With a pH measuring strip you can find out whether the soil is more acidic or alkaline. A pH value around seven, i.e. in the neutral range, is perfect. If the soil is too acidic, it can be improved with lime, if it is too alkaline, treat it with compost or manure. Also, check the drainage ability of your soil. To do this, the soil should be well watered once. The next day, take a handful of soil and press: If water is flowing out, you should improve the drainage capacity of your soil with the incorporation of compost. The longer a vegetable garden exists, the more important it is to maintain the soil regularly. The incorporation of compost after each cultivation not only serves to fertilize the next generation of plants, but also preserves the soil structure. Alternatively, you can use a high-quality vegetable soil such as Plantura organic tomato and vegetable soil. It supplies your vegetables optimally for a high-yield harvest and is also peat-free and sustainably produced.

Plantura organic tomato & vegetable soil

Tip 5 for growing vegetables: prefer in the house

The beginning is also difficult for the plants - luckily you can give them a little support: the plants can be grown in the house without having to brave the cold and bad weather in the bed. To do this, simply put the seeds in small containers with potting soil and place them in a warm, bright place. Do not forget to write the names of the varieties on the pots, otherwise it can easily be mixed up. As soon as the plants have the first two to four leaves, they can be carefully transplanted into the bed. After that, the seedlings should be watered immediately so that they can grow well.

Tip: Growing vegetables is particularly easy with a growing kit. Our Plantura vegetable growing kit contains everything you need to grow 5 colorful vegetables.

Plantura vegetable growing kit

Tip 6 for growing vegetables: Plant summer vegetables

The traditional summer vegetables, which include beans and cucumbers, but also peppers and tomatoes, are only planted after the last frost. The ice saints, whose feast days are in mid-May, are usually mentioned as the key date for moving to the garden. Once the “Cold Sophie”, the last of the ice saints, is over, the farmer's rule says that the weather remains stable and no more frosts are to be expected. Of course, the summer vegetables like it warm above all. That is why they are happy (especially at the beginning) to have warm water when watering.

Tip 7 for growing vegetables: Plant winter vegetables

When you think of winter vegetables, you traditionally have kale in mind. But there are many more varieties that prefer it a little colder: beetroot, carrots, onions and spinach are also included. Unlike summer vegetables, these plants can endure brief periods of frost and are planted in early spring or late summer. These plants, on the other hand, usually don't like heat at all: If they get too much heat, they start to shoot and are usually barely edible afterwards.

Tip 8 for growing vegetables: water, care, fertilize

The real work only begins when the beds have been created and the first seedlings have been planted. After all, it is now important to keep an eye on everything and make sure that the plants are developing properly. Above all, frequent watering is now a must. Check the top layer of soil regularly: if it is dry, it should be poured again, otherwise no water should be added, otherwise there is a risk of waterlogging. In addition, you should remove weeds regularly, as these compete with your vegetables.

Fertilization is also part of regular maintenance. Depending on the plant, fertilization has to be carried out differently, for most of them the choice of a primarily organic fertilizer such as our Plantura organic tomato fertilizer is advisable. This releases its nutrients slowly and evenly and is therefore particularly gentle. The fertilizer provides your vegetables with all the nutrients they need for three months. For strong and resilient plants with a rich harvest.

Plantura organic tomato fertilizer

Tip 9 for growing vegetables: The first harvest

After all the work, fun finally comes: the first plants are ready for harvest. The harvest usually takes place in several phases, depending on which vegetables were grown. The type of harvest also varies from plant to plant. Plants from which you only collect the fruit are best harvested daily. This stimulates the plant to produce new fruits and the harvest is bigger in the end. Plants that are harvested as a whole, such as lettuce or cabbage, can, on the other hand, be harvested all at once or as needed. If you want to harvest all the vegetables at once, you should think about how you will preserve the plants beforehand.

Tip 10 for growing vegetables: change trees

In order to ensure a good harvest in the next year, you should grow the vegetables in a rotation system. This means that the vegetables are not grown in the same place every year, but rather change their location. Since every type of vegetable has different nutrient requirements, this prevents the soil from being overused in the long term. At the same time, the rotation prevents insects or diseases that overwinter in the soil from infecting the new plants in the next year. A rotation system in which all plants are in the same bed once every three years has proven itself. But not every plant is compatible with every preceding crop: Inquire beforehand which plants are suitable for each other as pre- and post-crops. Please also note that significantly longer breaks for a bed are recommended for certain plants. It's best to have a plan to keep track of your rotation.

If you feel like creating a raised vegetable bed yourself in your garden, you will find instructions and tips for planting raised beds here.

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Frederike

I am a student of agricultural sciences and a real village child. At home I have a small vegetable garden that I tend and look after, and I prefer to spend the time outside. When I'm not outdoors, I love to write. My love is not only for plants and writing, but also especially for the animal world.
Favorite fruit: currants and raspberries.
Favorite vegetables: salsify, savoy cabbage and potatoes.