I'm new to gardening and could use a lot of advice
First I'll start by introducing myself since this is my first time on the forum. Hello, my name is Leah, I'm a 21 year old college student from Minnesota. My gardening experience is very minimal. My desire has been to grow a functional vegetable garden for most of my life. Growing up I tried but since the house I grew up in got partial shade at best I didn't have any luck. In a week my parents and I will be moving into a new home that has a vegetable bed that is full sun! WOO HOO!!!! I know that it's too late to grow anything this season but I'm wondering what I need to do to prepare it for next year. It's very over run and mostly all weeds. Some things, like I believe rhubarb and mint, are still growing in there but mostly we want to clear it out and start fresh. If a picture would help I'll try to take one after we close on the house this coming week.
I could use your advice on things like preparing the soil, weeding, getting the area ready for winter, what vegetables to pick for spring. I'm going into this with only the desire to grow but without any know how. I'm willing to learn if you guys would be willing to teach. Is there other things I need to take into consideration before the winter?
Also, about five feet away from where the garden is (and then some sections in parts of the garden) there is a huge ant metropolis. Like a 4'x4' mound. What action should be done to clear that out? My dad wants to just pour gasoline on the area but I'm afraid that may cause damage to grass and earth and I want things to grow.
I used to have a huge red ant hill inside an old stump. I would pour boiling water on it regularly. I would also dig down into the hill and pour more boiling water. I eventually won.
As for preparing your garden plot there are many ways. I, myself, rototilled, then picked out as many weeds as I could. Then a few weeks later rototilled and weeded again. I would level out the soil, and added compost, and added bags of Miracle gro garden soil and potting soil. I just continued to weed until no more grew back. This spring I had a weed free garden, except for the occasional invader. Some just cover it with black plastic to smother the weeds. I prefer to remove them entirely, afraid they will somehow revive themselves eventually.
In the spring, I rototilled, leveled out the soil, and made raised beds, weeds are almost non-existent.
For the winter, I would lay a couple of inches of mulch (weed free if possible), and you may cover it with black plastic. Some say you can cover it with carpet. I don't see why not.
Anyway, have fun, lots of work.
These are the easiest to plant as the vigour and growth habit of all the plants will be the same. Make sure you plant close enough for them to knit together into a ball of color, as there will be no looser-growing plants to hide any gaps.
Most fuchsias can be used in the garden for the summer, and brought in before the first frost. A good fuchsia catalogue will indicate the type of growth habit and whether they make good bedding fuchsias.
don't skimp on good soil. It will make gardening a pleasure and not a chore. Amend with compost to make it loose and easy to water and weed and insert new plants.
Thanks for sharing your experiences everyone. The tips are really very nice and helpful.
I'm spending every summer gardening since I was seven years old.
Helping my Grandma all the time. I like it. I sleep better when I'm tired.
Another piece of advice, that actually someone gave to me, is to protect your garden from those critters out there. I think sometimes as gardeners, we forget how quickly our gardens can get destroyed by animals. I came across this how to keep deer out of garden blog post that talks about the different animals to look out for and how to deter them from coming into your garden. It helped me, maybe it will help you.
Thank you very much for suggesting this.
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The Rain garden is a modern gardening technique which helps to temporarily hold and soak running rainwater or storm water. This method is generally planned near a runoff source like driveways. This rain garden is effective in places where natural slopes are present and usually consists of shrubs and flowering plants.
My name is Antoinette and I am 20 years old and I am I live in Los Angeles California.I recently taken over a garden that was once was realy great with lots of flowers and fruiting trees. However, this garden for the past couple of years has only been watered and grass mowed. I started clearing the grass and weeds fron the base of the most the plants and raked the layers of leaves that have accumulated over the years but I dont know what else to start doing to bring this gardenback to life.
Last edited by newbiegardener; 05-17-2013 at 08:22 AM.