I’ve been planting a garden for a few years now, but it’s always been a struggle to reap much of a harvest from it. Between the kids, dogs, and my horrible weeding habits, it’s been very hit or miss. This year, things have changed! Last fall, my dad helped me build two more garden boxes to finish off the terrace of boxes in the west end of my yard. Then this spring, he and I built a fence to block the garden from the rest of the yard. Finally I can keep the vegi’s safe from unwanted attention from both the kids and dogs!
To top it all off we had a very early spring, and as if it were truly meant to be, I was tapering for a marathon in May… all these things came together, and I actually got my
sh1t seeds together, and in the ground by the May long weekend. I planted carrots, lettuce, spinach, beets, radishes, zucchini, peas, beans, potatoes and tomatoes.
Things are starting to take off, and I think we’ll be able to start harvesting greens soon!
Here are some tips that I’ve learned over the years for gardening, especially in Calgary.
- Pick a few vegi’s, and focus on them. Root vegi’s do particularly well in short growing seasons.
- Get your kids involved. My kids LOVE to help plant things, or water the garden. It is messy and sometimes it means my rows aren’t straight but if they are involved they are more likely to want to eat the vegis.
- Let your kids eat off the plants. My kids also love to nibble on plants straight out of the garden. It might mean that less get to my table, but it instills great habits in your kids, and also gets a few extra vitamins in them that they probably wouldn’t get if you served them a plateful in the house.
- Buy what you can from seed, ie. Carrots, beans, peas, greens, etc. They are hardy and take the cool days of early spring well. It will cut down on costs too!
- Buy some things pre started. I like to buy tomatoes in particular pre started. They take a longer time to produce fruit, and do not like being cold.
- Keep looking in late spring, you might come across some deals. I stopped in at the garden center at a major grocery store this past weekend and got some pre started onions for a great price, I still had some space in my garden, so snagged them.
- If you have a section of garden where the soil isn’t great, and you don’t know what to do, plant potatoes! They will help loosen up the soil for next year, and you’ll have some yummy home grown garden fresh potatoes to enjoy in the late summer.
Do you have a garden? What’s your favorite vegi to grow?