2011 Garden Plan – My plan for this year.
There are some basic rules of thumb when planning your garden for the year that I learned the second year.
Start small – If this is your first attempt, just choose a few things to try. Like 3-5 things. Tomatoes, basil, squash of some sort, and marigolds. Ask your local experts for tried and true things.
Buy transplants – Buying starts from the home improvement store works best for beginners, plant several of the few you chose to plant and follow the directions on planting/spacing.
The most important: If you plant perrenial veggies/fruits like asparagus, strawberries, artichokes (in some zones), chives, parsley, other herbs, you will want to plant those items in their own spot because perrenial means that the plant will come back each year without replanting or by reseeding itself. Keep your perrenials separate from your other veggies because you won’t want to kill them when you are digging things up and out at the end of the season.
I still have some random things growing in weird spots because I did not know this shrewd piece of advice, which my neighbor (who happens to be a master gardener) shared with me. I have my asparagus, strawberries and sage bush in one area. But, my chives and parsley are way over somewhere else and I hate to disturb them, so I left them where they are, which is out of the way of my rows thank goodness.
There is a lot of debate about whether to “rotate” your veggies year after year to different spots or not. So I’ll leave that up to you. Science has shown that for example, if you leave the tomatoes in the same spot year after year you are helping establish the beneifical bacterias and nematodes. I tend to move things to where I think they will do best. I rotated once/twice and didn’t notice that much of a difference myself.