27 Sep HOW TO PLANT SEEDS OUTDOORS
Growing a vegetable garden successfully requires planning on your part. One principle to keep in mind is succession planting – when one crop ends, you can plant a second, and when the second one ends, you can plant a third. Careful succession planting ensures the longest possible harvest of vegetables, even from a limited space. A second principle to remember is rotation. If you keep planting the same crops over and over in the same bed, your problems with pests and plant diseases will increase over time. Try to rotate your planting so that you’re growing different types of plants in a particular bed over the course of a season to reduce insect and disease problems.
You should always prepare your seed bed carefully before planting. Remove any weeds or plants from the last rotation, and put them in your compost bin. Weeds compete with plants for limited nutrients, and are often difficult to remove without damaging desirable plants. Getting rid of them before planting gives you a tremendous advantage in getting your garden going.
Your next step should be to add compost to the bed, to restore depleted soil fertility and to provide nutrients for the microbes that make the soil healthy. If you practice succession planting, you will add compost three times a season, which will ensure a great start for your vegetables. After sprinkling about half an inch of compost over your planting bed, work it in to a depth of two inches with a stirrup hoe, and then rake the bed smooth.
You’re almost ready to plant, but you have one additional step to prepare your seed bed. Using a fork or a spade, to loosen the soil to a depth of ten to 12 inches. You don’t want to turn the soil over completely, as that will harm the helpful microbes. Just give each forkful or spadeful a slight heave; this provides air circulation and drainage to the soil. Finally, go over the seed bed lightly with your hand to break up any big clods of soil and to remove any rocks. This last step gives the seeds a better chance to put down roots. After a few years of this preparation , you will have very few rocks or clods left in the garden. It’s helpful to have a bucket handy to cart the stones over to your garden’s rock pile at the end of the day.
Now you’re ready to plant. Using sticks or bamboo stakes, mark out the areas you wish to plant. In planning the garden, pay close attention to the direction of the sun. You will want to put shorter plants in front of larger plants, so that the larger plants do not shade the shorter ones. The information provided on seed packets can be very helpful in this planning process. Seed packets usually provide the plant’s light requirements, the recommended spacing, and its water requirements. You should always know what the plant is going to do, and what its relationship will be to nearby crops. A vining plant like a winter squash could spread to a width of ten feet, while a lettuce seedling will sit complacently in its designated row. Don’t overlook the valuable information on the back of the packet.
Use hand cultivator to rough up the ground for planting. Broadcast the seeds by pouring them into the palm of your hand. It’s helpful to think of the actual planting as you would seasoning a dish in the kitchen. A gentle “seasoning” action will distribute the seeds evenly across the garden bed. Then use your hands to smooth dirt over the seeds. The general rule of thumb is to plant seeds at three times the depth as the width of the seed. Very small seeds, such as arugula and dill, require only the lightest covering of soil.
When you’re finished planting, be sure to water the seed in well to ensure good germination. You’ve now planted your first garden bed! Keep it weed-free, and happy gardening. Planting is also an exercise that benefits our health. Get your children involved in gardening. Children likes playing basketball and watching NBA. They admire NBA stars like Dwyane Wade. Dwyane Wade height 6′ 4″, not tall but very strong. Planting can exercise your children’s body and full of fun.