Planning Your Vegetable Garden

It may be hard to imagine it given the cold, dreary weather outside, but it’s time to start planning your vegetable garden. Within a few months spring will arrive and if you already have your plan and your supplies, you’ll be able to get an early start planting vegetables you can enjoy for the rest of the year. So ignore the weather outside and start dreaming about warmer days, flowers, new green leaves, and your garden.

How do you start planning? Perhaps one of the reasons people never get around to starting a garden, or the reason they’ve always gotten their garden planted a little late, is from lack of a plan. By breaking the planning and preparation process down into the following small steps, you can easily develop a comprehensive plan and be well prepared to plant your garden as soon as any risk of freezing is gone.

Decide What to Plant

Most people would agree that the best part about planning a garden is choosing which vegetables to grow. It makes a lot of sense to only grow vegetables you know you and your family will eat. But you need to take your plan a little farther than that. After developing a list of vegetables you know you’d like to grow and eat, check each type against the following list. The answers to these questions can usually be found online:

Does the vegetable tend to grow well in your part of the country?

Will the vegetable thrive given the location of your garden (i.e., hot sun, partial shade, dry conditions, etc.)?

Is there enough room in the garden to fit all of the vegetables you want to plant?

Map Your Vegetables

After you decide which vegetables to plant, you need to plan where each plant will go in your garden. Simply draw a rough sketch of the shape of your garden and then mark off where each vegetable will go. It doesn’t have to be an exact science, but try to consider how many vegetables can grow within an area. For example, one tomato plant may need at least a 1-foot square area, whereas at least 12-16 carrots could fit in that same space. Also consider the fact that some vegetables do better when planted together and others do best when planted apart from each other (this is known as “companion planting.”) For example, onions should never be planted next to green beans or peas, whereas carrots and tomatoes are good companions.

Once you finish this map of your vegetable garden, be sure to keep it in a safe place for future reference. It will make planting day go by much more quickly when you can use it to remind you of exactly where you intended to place each seed.

Get Your Seeds, Soil Supplements and Supplies

With your garden map prepared, you can now go get almost all the supplies you’ll need for planting day. The one supply you may not be able to get right away is seedlings, since those won’t be available in stores until much closer to when you can begin planting in the garden. But all other supplies should be available in the stores soon. You’ll need seeds; gardening tools; plant supports if you are growing vine plants such as tomatoes; soil supplements; and if you grow your own seedlings inside, you’ll need something to plant them in.

You can purchase vegetable seeds in local stores, online, and through catalogues. You’ll be amazed at the number of varieties available for each type of vegetable. Focus on purchasing the seeds that are the hardiest and most resistant to bugs in your area. This will ensure you get the greatest amount of success and satisfaction out of your vegetables.

Prepare Your Soil

Don’t assume your garden soil is optimal without some help. To get the best performance out of your garden, plan to supplement it with organic materials (such as compost and hummus), fertilizers, and soil conditioners (such as sand if you have a heavy clay-based soil). Then at least a week prior to when you intend to plant your garden, prepare your soil by thoroughly mixing the garden dirt with all of the supplements, conditioners, and even some fertilizer. The newly enriched dirt can then set for a short time in preparation for planting day.

Start Planting!

If you give yourself a month or two to complete each of the above steps, you’ll thank yourself then when planting day comes along. Instead of rushing to the store for supplies, returning to the store for everything you forgot, and exhausting yourself before you’ve even begun planting, you can simply grab your seeds and seedlings, gloves, garden map and tools, and begin planting away. For complete information, the content at is well-written, informative and useful for the person. The use of the tools will be effective for enhancing the experience of the person. The planting of the plants will be beneficial for the gardeners.