Tag: Vegetable Gardening

The ABC’s of Growing Your Own Food

We live in a world surrounded by convenience foods and unhealthful nutritional choices.

While most understand that putting these foods in the body can result in harmful effects, they often counter this with the excuse that it’s too expensive to eat right. If you’re one of them, there is a way to get the nutrients you need without breaking the bank. Read more

Sustainable Gardening Tips 

Many gardeners have sustainability in mind. Growing the food you eat, after all, is a big step to living a sustainable way of life. Compared to non-organic methods, organic methods are definitely more sustainable, not only for human health, but also for wildlife, the water, and the soil. Sustainable gardening, however, goes beyond the use of organic techniques. From energy and water conservation to the reduction of waste, there are so many ways to make our gardening practices more sustainable.

There are so many sustainable gardening tips you can follow, and below are just a few of them. Read more

Feature Story: Why use raised garden beds?

Photo: Surburban Dollar on Flickr

Earlier this month I reviewed Bunnings new ACQ treated pine raised garden beds. I now have four of these installed in my own backyard and they are working like an absolute treat. This article does raise the question though, why should you consider using raised garden beds in your garden, particularly if you want to grow vegetables? In this article I am going to share the top 5 reasons why I think you should consider using raised garden beds for your next vegetable gardening venture.

Reason 1 – Raised garden beds reduce the compaction of the soil.
Though it is true that plants needs good, solid, secure soil to grow in it is equally true that they need light, air filled soil to thrive. Raised garden beds, by nature, have soil that is much less compacted than general garden spaces. This is partially because when you build a raised garden bed, you have to fill it and this naturally reduces how compacted the soil is. It also remains less compacted because you have no need to walk in the garden bed, so the soil will maintain a level of looseness. This enables more air to be trapped and maintained in the soil, which plant roots need to survive.

Reason 2 – Raised garden beds are easier to use.
Raised garden beds are easier to use because the garden bed, being raised, is much closer to you. There is less need to bend down or squat. They are also easier to use, as long as they are designed well, because they bring order to your garden. Vegetables are generally planted in rows and raised garden beds are easiest built in rectangles and this natural order helps make raised garden beds easier to use.

Reason 3 – Raised garden beds utilise moisture more efficiently.
Plants need moisture to survive, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know this. Raised garden beds better utilise the water that is available. Light, fluffy, air filled soil is generally better at both absorbing large amounts of water but also at dissipating, or removing, excess water. As water seeps into the soil, soil that isn’t compacted absorbs what it can and then allows the rest of the water to sink deep down into the soil, which is basically what is known as drainage. Most plants need well draining soils to thrive and raised garden beds encourage this.

Reason 4 – Raised garden beds help plants to grow for longer.
Another thing about vegetables is that they generally prefer to grow in warm (note warm, not hot) soils. Raised garden beds tend to warm up quicker but also tend to not overheat. This, again, has a lot to do with the air in the soil. Because they tend to warm easier, it means the natural gardening seasons can be slightly extended each side because the soil will warm better than in normal garden beds. Raised garden beds better use the available sunlight.

Reason 5 – Providing organic matter and fertiliser is easier and more efficient.
With raised garden beds, your garden is very clearly defined. You also generally tend to use all the space in a raised garden bed. This means that all the organic matter that you add and all the fertiliser you provide go into growing healthy plants. When using a garden bed that is level with the surrounding area’s, nutrients from the organic matter and fertiliser that you add can leach away into surrounding area’s which don’t necessarily need nutrients.

Conclusion
If you are keen to grow vegetables I very strongly recommend you consider using raised garden beds. They say that an average, 4-5 person family could grow all the vegetables they need for a year with 6 1.5m2 beds. For most places this is probably more than you can fit, but most places could fit 2-3 of this size and even in 2-3 beds you can grow a lot of vegetables. Why not consider installing a raised garden bed or three soon? If you are interested, check out my review of Bunnings ACQ treated pine raised garden beds.

My Gardening Story – Growing Vegetables

Is it really July? Wow, the year is truly flying by. If you are new to the ‘My Gardening Story’ series, click the button above that says ‘My Gardening Story’ so you can catch up on the story so far.

The purpose of this series is to enable you to know more about how I became the gardener that I am today. I am not a ‘professional’ gardener, even though I do run a gardening business. By that I mean I have not been to university or TAFE and undertaken studies in horticulture or anything like that. I am simply someone who has had a lifelong passion to develop my green thumb. Why is this important? Because this blog is all about helping YOU develop the green thumb you have always desired. My story is a testament to the fact that I believe anyone CAN improve their gardening skill if they have enough dedication and desire to do so.

Here are links to all other topics covered in the My Gardening Story series:
Summary and free ebook
The beginnings
Grandma Middleton
Grandma Tysoe
‘Nan’ Croxford
My Parents
My First Garden
Plants I grew up growing, Part 1
Plants I grew up growing, Part 2
Plants I grew up growing, Part 3
Growing Vegetables
Starting Aussie Green Thumb: Part 1 – The Business
Starting Aussie Green Thumb: Part 2 – Starting the Blog
How I Became Aussie Green Thumb

Today I want to talk about the area of gardening that I have more to do with than any other and that is vegetable gardening. Almost all my life I have been involved, whether actively or as a spectator (and therefore learning by watching), with vegetable gardening. My parents loved to grow vegetables in the back yard because it is a very cheap way of producing food!

My first memories of vegetable gardening are of a very productive bean crop that we had growing right up towards the back fence of my first house. I would have been around 5-6 years old and I remember how excited I was every few days to walk down the back with Mum or Dad and harvest the latest crop of beans. They seemed to grown without end. Every time we went out there we would find more beans to pick off. As a child it was so exciting to sit down to dinner at night and eat something that my family had grown!

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Garden Product Review – Yates Fertilisers

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A very important part of gardening is know what fertilisers to use on what plants and when to use them. Whether you are growing roses, vegetables or an organic garden, fertiliser will go a long way towards improving the healthy and well being of your gardens and lawns. One company that excels in providing fantastic and wide ranging fertilser products is Yates.

How Yates Gardening Began

Yates was founded by Arthur Yates, an Englishman who migrated to New Zealand in 1879 to escape the damp weather of his native Manchester. The seed business that Arthur opened in Auckland in 1883 was the beginning of what was to become one of the most recognised names in Australian and New Zealand gardening.

Best Yates Fertilisers Reviewed

From the humble beginnings as a simple seed business, Yates has become a widely renowned gardening company and their fertiliser products are second to none. If I was to review every single fertiliser product that Yates has on the market, we would be here all day.

Instead I am going to focus on 3 kinds of fertilisers, organic, slow release and water soluble. Yates have many fertilisers that fit into these categories, continue reading to learn more.

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