For those of you beginning to make plans for your garden this year, you may want to checkout the Garden Planner Tool on Gardeners.com. I use this tool every year to make a “map” of my entire garden. This is my rough draft for this year:
I’m still making sure it’s the route I want to go and that all the plants will be “happy” by each other. (You have to be careful that something tall doesn’t shade something that needs sun, etc.) I created this by making each garden bed according to its size using their tool and then saving the image of each and pasting it into a Word document in landscape view. It gave me the capability to create my entire garden on one page. I can now laminate it and use it when it comes time to plant or when I need to refer back to where I planted everything later. It’s also going to come in handy when I plan next year’s garden as I can see where I had this year’s plants so I can try to rotate them, if I want.
What I love about the tool is that not only does it plug in the plant you want in each square foot, but it also tells you how many you should plant for that particular item. For example, you can place 16 carrots in one square foot but only 4 beans in another. It’s a super easy way to not only build your garden plan, but to also quickly plant the right amount later.
If you are considering gardening but not sure where to start, I highly recommend reading All New Square Foot Gardening Book. It’s full of all the info you’ll need to get started on a Square Foot Garden, should you choose to go that route. I personally love this way of gardening as it’s less weeding and I can plant a lot in a small space.
My kids each have their own garden bed and they love picking out what they are going to grow each year. It’s a great way to help your kids become interested in eating more vegetables as they may be more apt to eat what they’ve personally grown. I’ve also found that it’s a great way to teach kids not to waste food. Each year when they choose how much they’ll put on their plates, I remind them of all the hard work it took to grow them and that they’ll have to eat what they take.
Keep in mind that even if you have limited space at your residence, you can still plant a mini-garden by using containers to grow things such as lettuce, herbs, tomatoes, etc. Several garden centers carry plants that are specifically designed to grow well in containers. Just ask one of the workers to help you find some. I’ll be posting a container garden series here real soon.
Hoping that you have fun building your gardens!