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how do start a vegie garden?

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  • how do start a vegie garden?

    [align=left]Hello, my name is Nikki.* My husband and i have finally got a yard large enough to have a vegetable garden so i really want to start one, but am unsure of how to proceed.* I have always had a hard time with even the hardiest of houseplants until recently.* [/align]
    [align=left]What tips and advice can you give me for planning on how to do this properly?* keep in mind I know nothing about the proper way to do this and am just starting out.* [/align]
    [align=left]*[/align]
    [align=left]thank you for your help!* :D[/align]

  • #2
    Hi Brownthumb,

    Congratulations on your new garden!* You don't say where you live so I can't advise on when to start planting.* The most important advice I can give is to add lots of organic matter to your soil.* One of the best ways to do that is with lots of compost which you can purchase in bags or in bulk for large areas.* (A 3" or 4" layer mixed in would be a great start.)Then you can make your own for next year.* I also prefer organic fertilizers such as fish emulsion or fish emulsion mixed with seaweed.* It adds good micro-nutrients to the soil that synthetic fertilizers don't contain.* Synthetic fertilizers also leave behind residual salts and are like steriods for your plants.* They help to produce lots of succulent growth that insect pests are drawn to.* There are some helpful guides on the left side of this page you can click on.* Here's some other helpful sites.
    http://www.gardening.cornell.edu/hom...scene0391.html
    http://extension.oregonstate.edu/cat...tml/ec/ec1228/
    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/victorygarde...w/pp/soil.html
    http://www.gardening.cornell.edu/fac...ter/index.html
    http://www.cedar-grove.com/calculator.asp

    Harvest:
    http://www.savvygardener.com/Feature...egetables.html
    http://pubs.caes.uga.edu/caespubs/pubcd/L291-w.htm

    Newt

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    • #3
      [align=left]Hi,* I am also starting a vegetable garden - so to speak.* I already have a small outdoor vegetable garden that is going great (this is the first season I have had one).* Now I have been given a greenhouse frame.* We are putting raised beds in the greenhouse since where we live the soil is VERY rocky.* For the regular garden we got a load of topsoil from a local construction company.* I tested it and the nitrogen levels were off the chart HIGH, unlike the existing soil on the property, which is off the chart, LOW.* I have a contact who can give me a load of composted manure for the raised beds.* The beds in the greenhouse*only need 5 CY of soil to fill them.* A half-load is 6 CY.* I can either fill the bed with topsoil or composted manure - but not the 50-50 mix that I would prefer.* Which would be better???* The topsoil is doing great in my existing garden, but the composted manure is a better deal and supports*a local dairy farmer.* Will I be able to grow vegetables in a 100% composted manure bed?* Or will it be too hot?* Please respond with opinions and ideas on this.* I live on the northern wyoming / idaho border.* The existing soil is from an old river bed and is composed of massive cobbles, sand, and some soil.* Our winters are severe, summers are hot and short, and days are long in mid-summer.* We tilled the soil and removed as many rocks as possible before installing the raised beds.* I am also wondering if the existing weeds and grass (which have been completely chopped up and burried by the tiller) will grow again next year?* Do I need to put down some sort of temporary weed barrier (like several layers of newspaper) before I fill the beds with either compost or topsoil?[/align]
      [align=left]Thanks![/align]

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      • #4
        Hi KEMP,

        If given a choice between topsoil or composted manure as the only growing medium for veggies, I would choose the topsoil.* The best mix I can think of would be 60% topsoil and 40% compost.* If possible I would suggest you add compost.* I would also suggest a soil test.* Some veggies don't like too much nitrogen.* Corn is one that needs lots of nitrogen, but some veggies don't do well in high nitrogen soils.* Other veggies such as potatoes, cucumbers, squash, turnips, cauliflower, cabbage, broccoli, and kale don't taste good when grown in manure that hasn't been properly composted and is still 'raw'.

        Maybe you can still use the composted manure and mix it with the leftover soil.* Use it to amend the veggie beds outdoors.* You might want to consider just how composted the manure is.* There can be concerns about what is in it (potential contaminates) and how well it's been composted.* I would definately urge you to be cautious here.* You might find this info helpful about manures.
        http://www.attra.org/attra-pub/manures.html

        Lots of info here.* It's a summary of a book.* Click on the topics on the left.
        http://www.sare.org/publications/bsbc/index.htm

        If you really want to know what's in the manure you can find a certified manure lab for your state here.
        http://www.mda.state.mn.us/licensing...manurelabs.htm

        Newt

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