Vegetable Garden Tips
by Kimberly Bowers
(Ponce De Leon, FL, USA)
When my family and I first started gardening, we weren't really sure exactly what we were doing. We thought, just throw the seeds in the ground, water and they would take off. Boy were we wrong. Our first gardening season produced very little. We later found out that we watered too little. In Florida we have very hot, some times dry summers, so we definitely needed to water more often.
The second season we watered more, maybe too much more, every day we watered our little garden. While it did produce some vegetables, it didn't produce what we thought we would get. We later found out that you have to water every other day. You tend to learn from your mistakes, we originally planted cabbage, greens (mustard, collard, turnips) and lettuces, those are all cooler temperature vegetables. During the cooler months we had planted, corn, squash and peppers, those tend to grow better during the hotter months.
Gardening can be very productive, if you have an idea of what grows best in what season and in what type of soil. We wanted to be able to go out to our garden and be able to pick something off and bring it in at cook it. We are now on our third season gardening and we are still learning new and easier ways to grow food. For instance when you plant your seeds, most people put in two or three seeds cause you never know if they will take, if they all sprout, you have to back and only make sure there is one sprout per hole, that way they will not try to overtake each other. Also when watering your garden, make sure that you don't use a jet stream sprayer on them (daughter used it on our greens)...the vegetables get eaten up by the high power of the stream. If you can try to use a low flow sprinkler or a soaking hose, a hose that lets small amounts of water out of the pores of the hose.....kind of looks like it is leaking.
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