There is nothing quite like the taste of fresh vegetables straight from the garden. Add to this the satisfaction and sense of achievement, the savings, the knowledge that your vegetables are free of nasty pesticides and you have some very powerful reasons for growing your own vegetables.
Veges are easy to grow. You don’t need a lot of space as they can be grown in containers on the deck, in a designated vege patch or amongst the garden. Where ever they are there are a few vital points for success.
Key Points for Success;
Warm, sunny site,
Free draining soil with compost added,
Quality seeds or plants,
Water during dry periods,
Planned succession of crops.
Whether you grow your veges from seeds or seedlings ensure you purchase good quality product. At Décor we have only the best premium seedlings in punnets. In addition we have a range of exclusive ICAN Chef's Best Vegetable seeds. These are New Zealand's best seed varieties with better taste and disease resistance. You will not find these at any other garden place in the BOP.
Vegetables will grow best in a warm sunny position.
They will not grow and yield in shade or where they have to compete for light and moisture.
Shelter from strong winds is also a benefit.
The size of the vegetable garden depends on the size of your family and the vegetables required.
Ensure you have good quality top soil and mix compost or garden mix into vege beds .
Cool season veges are best planted from Feb till Sept for harvesting May to Dec.
This group includes broad beans, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, onions, peas, spinach and turnips.
Warm season veges grow best at temperatures above 20°C. They grow poorly in cold weather and are susceptible to frost. Plant from Oct till Feb for harvesting December till May.
This group includes beans, capsicum, eggplant, potato, sweet corn, kumara, tomato and all the curcubit vine crops.
There is a third group of vegetables which are intermediate and grow best at temperatures of 15 to 25°C. This group includes beetroot, cabbage, carrot, celery, leek, lettuce, parsnip, radish and silver beet. Many of these can be grown in cool or warm conditions, but the correct variety for the season must be chosen or they may bolt to seed.
For a steady continuous supply of vegetables it is best to plan requirements and sow little and often.
At the same time make use of the season changes and rotate crops.
A plot system or a narrow garden with short rows often makes this easier to manage.
Watering: During dry weather it is important to keep vegetables actively growing by regular watering.
If they suffer moisture stress they will bolt to seed.
Feeding: At the beginning of spring, apply a dressing of lime. Work this into the soil and leave for a week, then add ICAN General or a Vegetable Food and/or ICAN organic vegetable food and work this into the soil.
Regular feeding with ICAN Fast Food or Tomato Food is beneficial for fast growing crops such as lettuces and tomatoes.
Many sections / backyards today are small with limited scope for the vegetable garden. However, with careful planning it is still possible to grow a range of vegetables maturing at different times to provide near continuous supply.
Large pots offer another alternative for small spaces.
Another space saving technique is to introduce vegetables into the ornamental garden, potager style.
Hedges of sweet corn, or climbing beans on a fence, blocks of lettuce, carrots, onions, cabbages, and leeks for contrasting foliage. Try novelty vegetables such as multicoloured silverbeet, yellow tomatoes, yellow and red peppers.
Some vegetables such as potatoes, courgettes, buttercup / pumpkins, sweet corn, and broad beans take a lot of space and are best grown in a separate area where they are allowed space to spread without shading or smothering smaller plants.
Growing in plots rather than rows often works best for the smaller plants such as lettuces, carrots, onions, leeks.
To see our How to Guide on Tomatoes, please click here
To see our How to Guide on Vege Seeds, please click here
To see our Monthly Calendar please click here
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