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Getting Out and Gardening

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Getting Out and Gardening

Posted by Margaret Miller | Getting Out and Gardening
Gardening Advice

One of the best ways to enjoy nice weather while pinching pennies is to start your own garden. Individual plots offer a great environment that can allow you to enjoy the outside with your neighbors, friends, family or simply by yourself.

Planning Your Garden

When starting your garden, it’s important to consider the time of year and your plot size. For early spring in temperate climates like Pennsylvania; small fruits such as blackberries, blueberries, raspberries and strawberries are a good choice. Additionally, vegetables such as kale, lettuce and onions flourish also. Some plants need more space or have special requirements written on the seed packets. It’s important to keep these exceptions in mind when you plan your garden.

Soil: The Key To Success

The key to prosperous crops is good soil. If you can’t compost and want to avoid chemical fertilizers, mixing in coffee grounds with the soil will promote growth because they constantly release nutrients like potassium and magnesium into the ground. Once your plot is tilled, you are ready to begin planting. For small plots it is helpful to plan a grid system or row system to keep track of what seeds were planted where.

Digging In

Use a small shovel, or trowel, to dig small shallow trenches in which your seeds will be placed. At this point, water the soil before placing the seeds as they can wash away or become waterlogged. Place two or three seeds together in increments in each row. Finally, lightly cover the seeds with soil. According to organicgardening.com a good rule of thumb is to, “…bury seeds only about as deep as their diameter. Sprinkle soil on top of the seeds, pressing gently to ensure they have contact with the soil.”

The crops suggested above will be ready for harvest around the end of June and beginning of July. For more planting and harvesting guides visit: http://www.almanac.com/gardening/planting-dates/PA/Pittsburgh

Websites Referenced:
http://www.organicgardening.com/learn-and-grow/beginners-guide-organic-g...
http://www.sunset.com/garden/earth-friendly/starbucks-coffee-compost-tes...
http://www.almanac.com/gardening/planting-dates/PA/Pittsburgh

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