Vegetable Gardening for Beginners – Part 2

In case you missed Vegetable gardening for beginners – Part 1, be sure to check it out to get answers to other frequently asked vegetable gardening questions!

Vegetable gardening is a pastime that brings with it many perks and benefits. Not only can it save you money by providing a fresh, free and homegrown selection of veggies, it gives you a chance to get outside and enjoy some fresh air. However, it’s not necessarily an instinctive task, especially if you’ve never gardened before.

Here we offer you a plethora of answers to some of vegetable gardeners’ most frequently asked questions. So, go get those cute gardening gloves you saw at your local home improvement store —you’ll be up and gardening in no time.

What does it mean if my planted vegetable seeds don’t start to grow?

This could be due to a problem with germination or as a result of any, or a combination, of the following:

  • The seeds you planted were not fresh (too old)—be sure to always look at the viability date when purchasing seed packets
  • Watering the seeds too often could cause the seeds to rot or die
  • Planting the seed too deep in the soil—try to never plant seeds deeper than two times its width
  • Drought; which can leave the seeds dried up and dead, and
  • Insects below the surface of your soil that are eating your seeds

What should I do before I plant my vegetable seeds?

The health of your garden is contingent on the health of your soil. Before you plant any seeds, you will need to prepare the location where you will be planting them. To begin with, any existing vegetation currently present should be removed. Elements such as nitrogen, phosphorus, calcium, potassium and magnesium are required for the growth of healthy veggies. The soil provides the largest amount of these, but you will need to regularly perform soil tests and supplement with fertilizer if the element amounts are deficient. The most productive time to prepare your soil for spring blooming is during the fall. During this time, adding humus to your soil will work wonders for the future lives of your vegetables. Humus aids drainage and maintains moisture in the soil. If you prepare your soil immediately before you plant in the spring, be sure to only use well-composted organic matter.

Vegetable Gardening: Are their options I can plant when it is still cold outside?

‘Cool season’ vegetables can withstand light frost, making them a good choice to plant in the early months in Florida. Some popular cool season veggies include lettuce, broccoli, kale, spinach, carrots, potatoes, peas and cauliflower. For a more in depth list and tips on Fall Gardening, click here.