Plant a Healthy Vegetable Garden

By March 29, 2020Blog Post
Blog Post
2001 S. Chambers Road Aurora CO. 80014 Map

Plant a Healthy Vegetable Garden

By Jodi Torpey

Many gardening folks wait until the end of the vegetable gardening season to ponder what went wrong with their gardens. It may be because the tomatoes didn’t produce, insects ate the cabbages or cucumbers died on the vines.

Instead of waiting for your gardening results, start the season by planning ways to grow a healthier vegetable garden. There are many things gardeners can do to prevent the problems that make for an unhappy gardening experience.

The top item on the list is to make sure you start with good soil. Many problems can be avoided by paying more attention to the garden soil. Plants just can’t grow well in soil that lacks nutrients, soil that holds too much water because it’s clayey or soil that drains too fast because it’s sandy.

The best way to deal with soil issues is to take a soil test at the beginning of the season. CSU Extension has resources that give great advice about soil testing. It may seem like an extra unnecessary step, but it’s the one that’s sure to help with your gardening efforts.

Most garden soil can be improved by amending it with good-quality organic matter, like compost. Spread compost about an inch thick over the garden bed and dig it in. An alternative to amending garden soil is to find another planting method. You could grow in a new raised bed, starting with perfect garden soil, grow in a container garden or even plant vegetables right in a straw bale where you don’t need any soil at all.

Buy good-quality seeds and plants to start your vegetable gardening. Healthy transplants gives your healthy garden a head start. Look for plants that are green, sturdy and have healthy roots. Avoid plants that are tall and leggy, have yellowing leaves, sickly-looking roots or insects. Be sure to give plants time to acclimate to the outdoors before planting to reduce transplant shock.

Another key to a healthier garden is to wait for the weather to warm before planting warm-season crops. If you plant your tomatoes, eggplants, peppers, cucumbers, squash and pumpkins while the soil is still cool and night-time temperatures drop below 50 degrees, it will affect the plants. Tomatoes that set blossoms in cold weather can grow into malformed fruits while the growth of other plants can be delayed and they may not mature before the first frost hits in fall.

Once you have all these steps in place, maintain a healthy garden. Give plants the right amounts of sun, water and fertilizer. Keep the garden weeded. Watch for problems and take action right away whether it’s to cover plants with row cloth, pick bugs off of plants or spray aphids away with a blast of water.

If you take care of your garden, your garden will reward your efforts with bushels of fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs.


Author Nicks

More posts by Nicks

Leave a Reply