Designating a particular portion of your garden to a vegetable patch enables you to control and maintain growing crops properly. Depending on personal taste and available space, grow the same or different types of vegetables in raised beds, containers or directly in the soil. Be creative when designing a vegetable garden so it enhances the appearance of the area yet allows you to harvest a healthy crop.
Container gardening widens traditional gardening' scope, enabling people to grow both indoors and outside. Grow container vegetables if you lack garden space, have poor-quality soil or back problems that inhibit you from bending too low. Along with portability, containers increase production because every inch of soil is exclusively for planting. There are a wide variety of containers available in the market, including pots, planters, hanging baskets and half-barrels made from wood, terracotta, plastic, ceramic, concrete and brick. Recycle plastic buckets, a wheelbarrow, milk cartons or anything wide and deep enough to allow room for growth as an alternative to store bought containers. Use hanging baskets for trailing herbs or vegetables to enhance appeal at varying eye levels. Make sure the container you use has adequate drainage holes in its base to prevent root rot.
Raised beds are suitable for people with back problems or those who own poor-quality soil. Gardening in raised beds has several advantages including better drainage, increased production, easier care and maintenance and fewer weeds and pest problems. Clear the selected spot from weeds and plant debris, and dig a 4 inch deep trench over it. Rake the soil to level it. Lay landscape timbers over the site in a rectangle or square with the corners flush against the other. Arrange another course over it and a third for an even higher bed. Offset the joints of every upper row by 4 inches. Drill holes at the corners and middle and insert a 12-inch spike in each. Add good quality topsoil into the raised bed and plant vegetable seeds or seedlings.
Incorporate homemade trellises in your vegetable garden that are decorative yet functional. Whether growing your crop in raised beds, containers or garden soil over narrow spaces, use trellises to support climbers such as beans, okra, cucumbers, peppers and tomatoes. Make a bamboo tepee trellis or a latticework trellis using 1-by-2 lumber. Stand four 6-foot long bamboo poles over the ground so their tops meet and the lower ends are spaced apart. Secure the tops with wire and push 10 inches of the base of each pole in the ground. Wrap lengths of wire to form a row that extends through all the poles at every 1-foot interval. For a lattice trellis, lay five 6foot long 1-by-2s on the ground and another five identical lengths horizontally over them. Secure intersecting points to form a lattice trellis. Insert 10 inches in the ground or suspend from a fence or wall.