Starting a vegetable garden

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Questions by: Katherine F.

Dear Sarah, After many years of thinking about it and many years of reading about it, I have finally decided to try growing my own fruit and vegetables. The big question is how do I start? 

Sarah's Reply

Hi Katherine,

The first thing to consider is location. Most vegetable plants require at least 6 – 8 hours of sunshine. This may mean giving up the sunniest spot in your yard.

Avoid a spot with nearby trees as the roots can seek out the rich fertile soil of the garden bed and completely take over and in the height of summer the leaves can block the light.
Check to make sure there are no underground pipes or cables as these can be costly and potentially dangerous to accidentally dig up.

Decide how big you want the garden to be, although start modestly as it can become overwhelming if you start with a garden that is too large. If space is limited, most vegetables can be successfully grown in containers.

Vegetable gardens can be in ground or raised beds. Raised beds are only really essential if your soil is poor. Other than that, there are cosmetic advantages, however, filling a raised bed can be costly as it always takes more than you think and more often than not the soil in the ground is perfectly fine to grow in.

Growing vegetables has a degree of hard work involved, however is a rewarding thing to do, and well worth the effort.