Oftentimes, life can get in the way of creating or even maintaining a beautiful garden. It doesn’t take long for a vegetable garden to become overgrown with weeds and grass and using chemicals anywhere near the plots is a big “NO-NO.” Urban Eden Landscaping would love the opportunity to help you and your family have a fighting chance at growing your own food and tasting the difference of organic home grown produce.
Starting a Garden Plot
The best way to start a successful garden is to plan ahead. There are so many options and designs to choose from, but for the sake of keeping things simple, we’ll just stick to the good old fashioned in ground vegetable garden. If it’s fall or even winter and you think “well I can’t start a garden now…” well, think again! What we like to do is recycle all those fallen leaves that usually you’d stuff into a trash can and have the city pick them up or have hauled away by a local landscape company in Camas, Washougal, or Vancouver, WA. A more affordable and less time-consuming practice is to start a garden with all those leaves. Simply rake all the leaves into a rectangular area. If there is grass or weeds in the area, that’s okay, the leaves will do a great job of smothering and killing the grass. Come springtime, the leaves will be mostly composted by all the worms and other composting critters and the leaves make a great addition to the soil by adding organic matter. When the weather starts to warm up and the ground starts to dry out, it’s time to get that garden started.
There are multiple ways of working the soil and we find that rototilling is by far one of the least labor-intensive ways of going at it. Of course, rototilling is by no means easy, but it makes the project a much quicker job. An alternative to rototilling would be simply using a spade shovel and digging out the area. A good method is to just stomp the shovel into the soil, flip the chunk of earth over, chop it up a bit to loosen the soil, and repeat. After doing this for an hour or more, you’ll likely understand why a rototiller is the easier option. Anytime you’re using equipment, be sure and wear safety glasses, gloves, and ear protection at a minimum. Long pants and a long sleeve shirt are often wise as well to avoid any injury from projectile rocks and debris.
Planting a Garden
Now that the plot is all ready to go, it’s time to get those plants in the ground. Be sure the weather conditions are warm enough as you don’t want the frost killing off your young starts. To get a head start on the growing season, it works well to start your seeds indoors in a windowsill or if you’re fortunate enough to have access to a greenhouse that’s even better. This allows you to start seeds earlier and hopefully be able to harvest a little sooner as a result. The other option is to sow the seeds directly into the soil in your new garden beds. Depending on the outdoor temperatures, it can take a couple of days to a couple of weeks to see the seeds sprout and, of course, every plant variety is different. Now that you’ve got the garden started, all that’s left is to maintain its beauty. Checking the plants for disease and insects is a good practice and noticing these things early on can be a life saver. Watering routinely is important and will help new starts develop strong roots. You’ll also want to invest in some sort of organic fertilizer to encourage maximum growth. Be sure you’re tending to the weeds as it doesn’t take long for them to spread and can become overwhelming trying to stay caught up.
Whether you’re just pondering the idea of starting a garden, or you have just started one, or you have had a garden for years, Urban Eden can help! We can get your garden plot ready, plant your seeds or seedlings, or simply tend to those obtrusive weeds that keep popping up in your plot. We have all the tools and skills to help your garden thrive and we would love to help! Call Urban Eden Landscaping today at (360)567-6399, contact us here, or fill out our FREE estimate request form online. Happy gardening!