Category Archives: Gardening

Fresh and Lively Gardening Tips

Making your property look more lush and beautiful by gardening is something that has been done through the ages. Novice gardeners may take one look at a beautiful garden that was established years ago and think they want their yard to look exactly like that. Gardening takes a great deal of work and if the beginner is willing to put in the time and effort, their garden will be the envy of everyone in the neighborhood, in time. With these gardening tips for beginners you should have no problem getting up and started.

The first and most important tip for the beginning gardener is start small. This cannot be emphasized enough. Your garden is never going to look like a garden that was started ten or twenty years ago and if you were to ask the owner of the garden they will tell you it took that long to get it to look that way. If you don’t start small you run the risk of being discouraged once you find out all you have to do to have that beautiful and lush garden. If you take it step by step and year by year, it is not half as scary. If you are flower gardening just plant close to the house and maybe down the walkway and driveway. If you are trying to make a vegetable garden make it at the most 100 square feet, no more than that.

The next important tip is to decide what kind of garden you are able to have in the space that is available. If you have a majority of shade you will have to plant plants that like to be in the shade. Do not expect a flower that needs full sun all day to grow in a yard that is shady, it just doesn’t work. You may have just one area in your yard that does get sun daily. Most sun loving plants need 6 to 8 hours of sun per day, so watch that spot during the day and see how many hours the sun hits it. Vegetable gardens do need at least 6 hours of sun per day.

The spot in which you place your garden must be well drained. If you plant where water collects every time it rains your garden will rot and die. Pick a spot where you rarely see water gather when you have a storm. Too much water will rot the roots of your plants and they will not survive. This applies to flowers and vegetables.

Make sure to check the acidity of the soil. You can get a soil testing kit at any nursery or discount store and follow the directions. If there is too much acid in the soil or the soil is too alkaline you will need to add additives to the soil Just take your soil test to a nursery and ask them what you need. They will be happy to tell you what you need and how to add it to your soil before planting.

Don’t start with seeds the first time you plant. This is a big mistake. Most flowers and vegetables take forever to grow from seed and if you don’t put it in the right time the growing season will be over before you see flowers or vegetables. Most seeds need to be started indoors at the end of the winter in order to be ready to plant in the late spring. Do yourself a favor and purchase plants to put in your garden, both flowers and vegetables. Do a search online for each of the items you plan on planting so you can learn how deep to plant and other tips about planting that specific plant.

Your garden will have to be weeded, watered and you will have to feed the plants in it. Nurturing a garden is somewhat like taking care of a child although not quite as intense. You have to be vigilant against disease and bugs and other wildlife that will attach it. Daily walks in the garden to inspect any damage are necessary. Weeding has to be done on a regular basis and if you let that go your garden can become shabby and the flowers and vegetables can be choked out and die. Periodic feeding is also necessary.

Become friends with the people at the nursery during your first few years of gardening. They will be a valuable resource as is information online. Be sure to check information to see if it is for your area before you take any online information. Join a garden club as they will probably be one of the best resources you can find locally. The best tip that can be given to a beginning gardener is to have fun. You will have successes and failures. Learn from both and always ask for help.

Organic Gardening Tips

There are some obvious organic gardening tips that most gardeners know, such as using compost and organic fertilizers. These are pretty basic organic gardening tips. However, there are a lot of other tips that are just as easy to follow, but not as well-known. The beauty of organic gardening is that it offers you a safe and healthy way to grow the plants that you want to grow, whether they are vegetables or flowers.

You could try organic gardening tips like using a Toad House. Many people do not realize just how effective toads can be in the removal of insects. A toad can eat 50-100 insects in one night. Encouraging these harmless creatures to take up residence in your garden can severely cut down on your insect problems without the use of chemicals. If you have children, they will love watching the toads in the garden too.

Organic gardening tips like using BEE-AllureĀ™ Honey Bee Attractant can also help to increase the yield from your vegetable or flower garden. These can be even more important additions to your garden since so many honey bee colonies have been dying off in recent years. Honey bees are some of the best pollinators you could have in your garden. Many people worry about bees stinging them, but honey bees will generally not sting people unless trapped. However, for those people who are allergic to bee stings, this option may not be a good idea.

One of the most aggravating problems in your garden is keeping down weeds. You could choose to use an organic weed killing product or you could try Weed Barrier Mat. These mats can prevent weeds from growing between your vegetable rows so you never have to break your back pulling weeds again. Even if a weed killer is organic there is always the chance that it may damage your other plants if used incorrectly. The mats remove this worry.

Organic gardening tips can cover a wide range of issues that you find in your garden. Everything from insects that can damage your plants to better ways of ensuring that your soil is full of the nutrients your plants need. Earthworms are a great organic addition to any garden. They are natural aerators and their castings add nutrients to the soil.

The main reason that so many people are changing over to organic gardening is for the safety of their families. Organically grown food does not have the possible danger of chemical residues that can either be left on the outside of vegetables and fruits or absorbed into them. Chemical products also have a chance of leeching into the ground water that your family drinks. Chemicals can either cause illness or death in wildlife and pets that are roaming where they have been used.

Gardening Tips For Teens

Here are some good gardening tips to follow if you are a beginner and/or a teenage gardener. I am not the most knowledgeable gardener yet, but these are very important whatever method of gardening you use.

1. Weed Control

Weed control is extremely important. You must keep the weeds out, or you will have very little to no produce. When the weeds have control, water can’t get to the plants, and the poor plants cannot get enough sun. The weeds eventually take over even the roots of the plants and seedlings. As you can see, if you do a little hoeing every day, the weeds are under your control. If you do not, a week will pass by and there have you a hundred good-sized weeds. This can be extremely discouraging, because I have been utterly discouraged as well. But this comes at the top of our list of Gardening Tips, because it is definitely most important.

2. Animal/Pest Control

Animal and pest control is very important. My main adversary to my gardening plans are deer and beetle worms. It gets so frustrating when you prepare the ground, turn it, hoe it, even it out, plant, water, and hoe the weeds every day, and one day, as soon as it is edible, it is gone. This is another main reason why many beginners give up. It doesn’t matter how high you build the fence- the deer jump over it. But one thing I seriously recommend is the square foot gardening method. As a result of this method, I have had a hundred times less weeds, and NO pests and deer eating. Why? I bought a net that fits perfectly over the 3×6 bed. Otherwise, my little garden would be a salad bar for the critters. This is an extremely important gardening tip, for without it you WILL become totally discouraged and give up like I almost did until I found square foot gardening.

3. Only 2 seasons?

Most people think that you can only garden two seasons of the year – spring and summer. This is totally untrue. With some newer methods, you can garden most of fall, and some of winter. If you have a greenhouse system, you can garden all year round. With the new square foot gardening method, I can now put a cold cover over the garden and last many frosts and have many fresh veggies throughout the fall. With an herb garden, I can put a simple little herb garden in a plastic bucket and put it in and out for a long time. Thus you see this third of the gardening tips proves the myth of two seasons is totally untrue.

4. Traditional Gardening?

Traditional gardening has been in use for a very long time. Personally, I think it is extremely inefficient, much more work, and much less percentage of seeds to harvest. Just think about it. Someone plants a thousand lettuce seeds in one row of their traditional garden. They end up thinning them out to make some space. So many good seeds wasted. And then, when they are finally ready, who comes? Deer and rabbits come and eat everything in sight. However, there is a solution to the poor planning of the traditional methods. That solution is Square Foot Gardening. So if you want to be a successful gardener, you must take action with these great gardening tips, and soon gardening will be very fun!

Fall Gardening Tips

Take time to enjoy the Fall sunshine and warmth to implement Fall gardening tips that make home more enjoyable. Many individual only see fall gardening as a time to tuck away the garden and wait until spring time to enjoy the garden’s harvest and activities again. Home gardeners can follow savvy Fall garden tips and enjoy Fall at home in the process of tackling Fall gardening tasks.

1) Store Garden Hoses With Care

Coil garden hoses neatly, tie to prevent uncoiling and hang on a garage storage hooks. At growing season’s end, drain all garden hoses, connect the ends to protect them for bumps, and store away from harsher weather. Store garden hoses with enough space around them to offer protection from getting caught or tangled. Proper Fall care of your garden hoses will mean they are in working order next Spring and may save you the time of running to the store for replacements. Another option for storing garden hoses is to use a galvanized bucket for holding the hose in off-season gardening months.

2) Fall Mulching Protects Flower Beds

Wait until the ground has frozen and then mulch around the crowns of perennial plants to reduce the chance of frost heaving them upward. The best Fall gardening practices are always to take care of existing plants that thrive. There are many varieties of mulch; however, the best source may be fresh garden compost. Test the soil for its Ph balance to help determine the best mulch for each flower bed. For example, soils that tend to be too alkaline will benefit from a cocoa bean mulch which has multiple purposes: protecting the perennials during winter, contributing toward more acidic conditions, reducing weeds, and adding nutrients to the soil as it breaks down.

3) Organized Garaged Store Garden Tools Safely

By next Spring it may be hard to recall just where garden tools were stored in the Fall. Save hunting time by organized the garage storage area. Convert garage wall space into store for large gardening tools. The choices for DIY garage peg boards and hook assortments is nearly endless. Consider first what specific garden tools need to be hung and kept out-of-the-way, and then purchase the perfect hook for the job. Gardening tools stored vertically on secure hooks attached to the wall are easy to sort and see just what is needed next.

4) Keep Gardening Through Fall With A Garden Cold Frame

Don’t allow hardier herbs and vegetable gardens fade too early as frost starts nipping around. With a little planning, they keep growing and harvesting beautifully under a little extra protection from a garden cold frame. Even using a old sheet to cover them at night can add weeks of eating pleasure and the ability to cut and bring the last blooms indoors.

5) Use Fall Planter For Fall Color

Add Fall colors to your porch for bright curb appeal with Fall planters. Tuck in colorful perennials, the last of your climbing vines for a few training branches, orange and yellow gourds that echo Fall’s features. Place them on a pedestal for eye-catching displays for the neighborhood to enjoy.

These Fall gardening tips mean spending less time hunting for gardening tools next spring, enjoy a garden that flourishes with healthy soil, and make mulch that will yield better blooms next year and fewer weeds. All the while, savvy home gardeners can enjoy Fall gardening and it’s harvests longer.

Gardening Tips

Gardens come in different varieties like the plants you find in them. There are several gardening tips that can be used for all type of gardens.

1.Mulching protects your garden topsoil from being blown away. It also provides nutrients as it decomposes and improves the appearance of your gardens. Mulching has other benefits and is one of the most recommended gardening tips by gardeners and farmers alike.

2.Healthy plants are more disease resistant. Plants are like people, a person with a strong immune system can combat diseases. A healthy plant does the same.

3. Pests can be eradicated by cleaning the plant with a watery solution of soap. Just make sure to rinse after. This gardening tip is best heeded for fruit bearing trees or edible plants.

4. Using compost fertilizers are a great way to have healthy plants. It is also a great way to save money on expensive fertilizers. Non -organic fertilizers also tend to leave chemical residues that can accumulate in garden soils and harm not only the plants but the gardeners as well. They cause toxins to go to the water supplies. Another gardening tip recommended not just by farmers and gardeners but also by environmentalists.

5. There are several plants that are only suitable for a specified climate, a certain kind of soil or can only grow with certain plants. You have to know what plant grow in the conditions you have in your area this is for you to avoid unnecessary purchases. This is a money saving gardening tip.

6.Landscaping is a good investment which can double the value of your home. This is one gardening tip that can earn you money.

7. Growing grass on bare ground is an easy way to make your home look better and appreciate in value. This is one gardening tip that promotes earning money while growing grass legally.

8. Aside from looking great in your home, trees also provide some sort of protection from direct sunlight exposure and strong winds.

9. Vines on the walls, fences and overhead structures also would offer some protection and would also look great.

10.Flowers are beautiful, but they are also expensive. Get one that is resistant to many elements. Flowers from your local community already have developed resistance to conditions present in your area.

11.For most gardens plants, their roots go only as deep as 6 inches. Putting fertilizer deeper than that would be a waste of money. Put them shallower as they seep down when the plants are being watered.

12.Earthworms are important to plants. They till and aerate the soil for the roots to breathe. Non-organic fertilizers can kill them. This gardening tip dates back to the old days of gardening.

13. Having several kinds of insects that are beneficial to your garden would be good. These insects can be encouraged to stay by having diverse plants in your garden.

14. Spot spraying weeds with household vinegar, instead of using commercial weed-killers, can eradicate them. This is another environment friendly gardening tip.

15. Avoid putting too much mulch on tree trunks; this would encourage unwanted pests to reside on them.

16. Use plant varieties that are common to your area or have been taken from an area with similar conditions.

17. Be sure to know the plants that are poisonous. If you are intent on growing them, make sure to have the necessary cure available in your household. Take note of this gardening tip, it can save your life.

18. The best time to water plants is during mornings.

19. Before planting a new plant in your garden, you must consider its height and size when it matures. This garden tip can help you save money in the future.

20. Newly transplanted plants may require special attention during its first week. This is to reduce the stress and shock it got during transplantation.

And last but not the least of the gardening tips…

21.Plants are living entities. If you want them to grow in your garden you have to treat them as such. They need to be taken care of. They are like your pets, you look out for them. In return you get that feeling of contentment watching them thrive.

Organic Gardening Tips

Unlike the popular theories that state that the space shuttle could miraculously appear if blown up enough times, an organic garden is usually not the result of an accident. People that have a successful garden have created one based upon their consistent upkeep, planning, and a desire to make their garden grow. Regardless of the therapeutic value the gardening has, relaxation has little to do with the steps that it takes to ensure the success of your gardening endeavor. Here are a few organic gardening tips on how to make sure that your organic garden goals are reached by looking at planning, soil preparation, fertilizers, irrigation, and insect and disease control.

Tip #1 – a plan is always needed. Not something that is thought of and reconsidered over time intermittently, but a specified plan of action that leads to a specified end result. When you decide to grow your garden, and you choose to do it in an organic matter, you will need to take a few things into consideration such as location, the environment that the plants will grow it, the time that it will take in order for you to properly take care of your garden, how much effort will be involved and are there any resources that you may or may not be able to acquire in order to reach your final goals.

Once you have a clear written outline of what it is you need to do and what you need to acquire to reach your garden goals, it is time to start the plan into action. Action is everything once the goals are defined. If you set your goals but neglect factors such as good seed, compost, or even a source of good water for your plants, you will fail in your attempt because any compromise will lead to an overall failure.

Tip #2 – prepare your soil. Soil preparation is the foundation of the growth of any and all plants that you have. From the soil, the plants will be able to get their nutrients. Soil that is hard or dense will be almost impossible to aerate and therefore the plants will not get enough oxygen through the root system in order to thrive and flourish. Likewise, if there is no way for the water to evenly percolate to the plants roots in your garden, some plants will make it while others will die without consistent moisture, and some will be oversaturated and get root rot.

Another organic gardening tip is that you must also consider the consistency of the soil in regard to the amount of compost and nutrients that will be accessible to the seeds that will grow into the plants in the garden that you desire. By adding natural compost or other fertilizers to enhance the nutrients within the soil such as nitrogen or potassium, you will need to prepare this ahead of time, specifically as you are preparing the soil and getting ready to plant your seeds.

Tip #3 – Add compost. With reference to fertilizer, if you are doing this in an organic matter, some of the best fertilizer that you can get can either come from your compost pile or from a worm bin that you have created through your vermicomposting efforts. This needs to be prepared several weeks in advance so that it is ready to use when you are ready to plant. Compost that has not had time to properly finish will be detrimental to your soil and therefore proper preparation is always mandatory before getting ready to add these nutrients to the soil that will bear the fruit of your labor.

Tip #4 – Consistently water your garden. The consideration of water is also paramount in your success. You must have a way for your organic garden to get enough water on a regular basis so that it can grow unimpeded by the periods of droughts that are self induced by someone to did not plan ahead of time and create an optimal situation for the gardens irrigation needs. This includes having enough access to water, easy access through an irrigation system or hose system, and potentially a sprinkler system on a timer which can ensure that the garden is receiving water on a regular basis.

Tip #5 – Beware of insects. One final organic gardening tip that you should consider is that when your plants begin to grow, insects will appear. Weeds will also appear as well as potential diseases that can kill off your crop. This will take some wisdom on your part knowing the types of plants you are growing and finding natural alternatives to pesticides that may inhibit or deter the natural growth processes of your plants. If you are an organic gardener, you will not want to use these anyway and therefore finding beneficial insects that attack bad insects or natural scents or plants that will deter weed growth or disease is paramount in ensuring the healthy growth of your garden.

A Few Gardening Tips For You

Below are some gardening tips that I feel are worth mentioning, and may possibly get you on your way to earning your green thumb. There are never to many gardening tips and I will just brush up on a few to get you started. I am sure if you do a search in Google for “gardening tips”, you will have more at your disposal than you can ever ask for.

You could also try garden magazines and books and even gardening clubs. There is plenty of knowledge to go around. The list below will sum up tips on planning your plot, soil preparation, mulch, compost and the watering of the plot.

Garden Tip Number 1

Always plan out your garden before you start digging away at your yard. A good way to start is to take a long look at your garden a try to picture your finished product. Take into account the hight the plants can grow to, the sun spectrum, and the proximity to a water source. Once you see a place you like take a seat and start your gardening plot plan on paper. This way you can get more detailed and include things that you may forget otherwise. Make sure to include in your plans the proximity of your garden hose or garden hose reel and fixture.

Garden Tip 2

Possibly the most important tip of all is correct soil preparation and mixture. It is extremely important to use the non toxic soil nutrients when you are growing anything that you plan on eventually consuming.If you are growing vegetables in your garden then a homemade compost is by far the best fertilizer for your garden. The results will speak for themselves. It is not as hard as you think. Do some research and you would be surprised. If compost is not available the next option is mulch. If you are going to go with this rout, it is best to look for soft woods such as redwood or spruce. Softer woods have an easier time breaking down and spreading the nutrients to the soil in the bed. If you are not growing vegetables there are loads of fertilizers that can fit your project. Just go to your local nursery and they will lead you in the right direction. When you decide on your fertilizer, make sure everything is mixed well and aerated properly. A garden tiller can make this part of the job a lot easier but is not necessary.

Garden Tip 3

Once your plant area is picked out and the soil in properly spread in your garden, you can then start laying your plants in the pattern you thought up in your plans. Laying the plants out can give you a better picture of your end results. It is also best to arrange the plants from the largest growing in the back and decreasing toward the fron of the garden. You can group the plants together according to characteristics. This way you can get the most out of your area with all the plants getting the full benefit of the suns rays. This alone can make a huge difference.

Garden Tip 4

It is always best to use gardening sprinklers but this is not always possible for your first garden. If you cannot afford garden sprinkler you can still automate the garden with a hose attachment sprinkler.You can use timers that attach to the hose fixture and place the sprinkler wherever needed and this can make the watering automated also. You might still need to use the garden hose here and there. If you don’t mind watering than a garden hose and garden hose reel setup can work nice and fulfill all the necessary watering you need.Another option is the drip irrigation systems although this will also cost you a little more.

Though the above tips are very important for the basics of your garden you can get a lot more from doing your own research on the internet search engine, ordering a book, or joining a garden club. Ordering a magazine or joining a club can help a lot as you get new informative tips every month. I hope the tips are helpful and wish you good luck on your green thumb quest. You will be there before you know it.

Useful Home Gardening Tips

When one finds himself looking for home gardening tips, it is important to think about the types of gardening such as indoor gardening, organic gardening, and vegetable gardening. These different “genres” of home gardening tips will only lead you into confusion so it is very important to take note that there general home gardening tips that are versatile and are fitting for your average gardener. But before anything else, one has to have an idea on how to go about gardening at home so one can fully grasp the very idea of general home gardening tips.

What is home gardening about? It is a type of gardening where home growers can sustain themselves with healthy tasting produce and flowers that seem to bloom with the essence of beauty. To earn the so-called tasty and beautiful products of gardening, one has to get the right set of gardening tips available.

When it comes to gardening at home, there are certain tips you should follow.

These home gardening tips are best for those who are about to start out as home gardeners. First off, when planning to set up a home garden, it is very important to pick a specific area in your lot. This area will depend on the type of plant or crop you are planning to cultivate, but almost all of the plants for gardening relatively share the same set of desired outdoor conditions which are full or near-full exposure to sunlight.

It is also vital to set up your patch of plants near a faucet so it would be easy to maintain since you wouldn’t need to move around that much. Of all the home gardening tips out there, this is one of the most important to take note of.

Deciding which plant or vegetable to grow is one of the most crucial processes a gardener has to take since knowing which type is also going to give you an estimate of the size of the garden plot you should have. For example, vegetable plants take up small patches of land and are easy to grow while vine crops, such as cucumbers or watermelons require larger patches of land and are more difficult to handle compare to vegetable plants.

These home gardening tips are easy to master but the most important factor in home gardening comes from no book or from any tip out there. It will come from you. Each successful gardener has his or her own set of gardening tips. These tips will be nothing if you would not exert time and effort into gardening. After all the hard work, you will be able to see and even literally taste the fruits of your labor.

Lettuce Gardening Tips

Gardeners can select from a large variety of lettuces that are easy to grow, highly productive in limited space, and virtually pest and disease free. Lettuce is definitely one of the more “care-free” crops. Lettuce is a great way to start gardening; it is what I started out with actually. There are a few key principles though that should always be kept in mind.

Lettuce

For maximum lettuce production, it’s wise to select a site where the soil drains well, yet retains some moisture. The soil should also be rich in nitrogen and potassium, The best way to accomplish this is to work in plenty of organic matter (compost, rotted manure, or leaf mold) that will loosen and enrich the soil.

Most lettuce varieties mature in 45 to 55 days, allowing many gardeners to plant two or even three crops. But looseleaf and butterhead leaves can be harvested at just about any time in their development. Heading varieties take longer to mature. Romaine takes 75 to 85 days and crisphead 70 to 100 days.

By choosing the right varieties and with these lettuce gardening tips, it’s possible to have lettuce in your garden throughout the growing season. This lettuce is great for salads throughout the growing season. There really is nothing better than a fresh Caesar salad with fresh romaine from the garden!

Lettuce Gardening Tips

Lettuce History

Lettuce, one of the oldest food plants known to man, is believed to have originated in India and Central Asia. Even Herodotus wrote of lettuce being served in ancient Greece, and it was a most favorite vegetable in ancient Rome. This is where we get “Caesar Salad”! In fact, the word “lettuce” is derived from the Latin root word “lac” meaning “milk,” referring to the milky juice found in mature lettuce stems.

Columbus and other European explorers brought lettuce seeds to the New World. Our early colonists included lettuce in the first gardens planted in American soil. Today, lettuce is a favorite vegetable here and around the world. It has revolutionized all cultures of food, from hamburgers to salads.

More Lettuce Gardening Tips

Lettuce is so easy to grow it can be started indoors for early transplants or sown directly in the garden. In fact, doing both is recommended to get maximum production. Lettuce seeds are extremely tiny, so it is recommended to be generous with them when planting. It is a good idea to

Romaine Lettuce

start some lettuce seeds indoors in peat pots a few weeks before the last frost date in your area. Provide the seedlings with plenty of sunlight or keep them under artificial lighting until ready to move into the garden. Transplant the seedlings as soon as the soil can be worked in the spring. If a hard freeze threatens, protect the seedlings with a cloche or row cover. Reserve a number of lettuce seedlings to fill empty spaces in the garden as the season progresses.

To sow lettuce directly in the garden, simply plant the seeds about 1/4 inch deep, tamp them down, and water. It’s that simple! Space the sowings according to packet directions that are based on the size of the mature lettuce. For example, a crisphead may require a square foot of garden space. As many as nine plants of a small leaf lettuce variety can grow in the same space.

Keep in mind that lettuce seeds won’t germinate in soil that is 80 degrees F. or warmer, so there’s no sense in sowing directly in the garden in the summer. Resort to starting heat-tolerant varieties indoors and moving the lettuce seedlings into the garden, preferably under partial shade, after they’ve developed a few true leaves.

Lettuce Cultivation

Here are two cultivation tips to keep in mind:

Succession plantings.

Lettuce is ideal for succession planting. Sow seeds every two weeks for production throughout the season, starting with early lettuce varieties, using heat-tolerant varieties as your main crop, and then switching to fall crops late in the summer. Or, if you prefer, use lettuce in successions with other crops. For example, plant lettuce in the spring, followed by bush beans in the summer, followed by lettuce again in the fall.

Watering.

The key to lettuce production is supplying moderate but almost constant water, especially during hot weather. Unless there is regular rainfall, lettuce must be watered deeply at least once a week- more frequently during periods of drought. Mulch with a layer of compost or clean straw to help the soil retain moisture. A drip-irrigation system is ideal.

Lettuce Growing Tips

To improve overall lettuce production, consider using the following four techniques.

Raised beds.

To maximize lettuce production, plant seeds in raised beds. The raised beds warm up faster than the surrounding ground. You should be able to get an earlier start in the spring and a later crop in the fall. Raised bed gardening is, without a doubt, the best way to garden anything out there. Its simplicity, organization, incredible fertility, and results are astounding.

Living mulch.

To make the most of limited garden space, plant lettuce around taller plants like broccoli, Brussels sprouts, peppers, and eggplants. This helps the lettuce grow a lot better; if they are left in the beating sun without moisture, they will not be able to survive. The lettuce helps its neighbor by keeping the surrounding soil moist and cool and keeping weeds shaded out. As the taller plants grow, they provide needed shade for the lettuce as the days get warmer.

‘Tucking.’

You can also start lettuce seedlings indoors for filling vacancies in the garden in late spring and again in early fall as other crops are harvested. Simply ‘tuck’ a seedling in the vacant spot to keep every inch of garden space in constant production.

Ornamental use.

Many varieties of lettuce are welcome additions to ornamental beds. For example, ‘Mighty Red Oak,’ ‘Sweet Red,’and ‘Sierra Blush’ can easily fill gaps in flowerbeds, adding splashes of red where needed.

Insects and Diseases

Lettuce is generally disease and pest free, but you should still be vigilant.

Cutworms and slugs are the most bothersome pests. Use a paper collar around young lettuce seedlings to keep the ravenous caterpillars at bay. Slugs are tougher to control. Sprinkle wood ashes or diatomaceous earth over the soil around the plants to discourage the nasty mollusks. Be sure to reapply after each rainfall.

A major threat is lettuce rot which first attacks the lower leaves in contact with the soil and then spreads throughout the plant.

With these lettuce gardening tips, you can stop this. The best way to prevent fungal and bacterial diseases is to rotate crops. Don’t plant lettuce in the same bed two years in a row.

Raised Bed of Lettuce

Perhaps the greatest threat to lettuce growing are deer. If there is no protection or netting over these lettuce plants, I can assure you that the deer will have a salad bar feast and everything will be gone. I specially recommend the plastic raised beds with pre-made nets from gardeners. These are what I use for my garden. These lettuce gardening tips will save you a ton of time that I had to learn by experience.

Lettuce Harvesting Tips

Lettuce can be harvested any time after true leaves form. For the best quality, better to pick early than late as lettuce allowed to grow too long may be bitter and tough.

To harvest crisphead, Batavia, and romaine varieties, cut the plant right at the soil line when mature, if you prefer to harvest full heads. You can do the same with butterhead and looseleaf lettuce, but I prefer to harvest only the outer leaves as needed. This keeps the plants in production longer. Try to harvest in the morning when the leaves are crisp, sweet, and full of moisture.

When the crown of a lettuce plant elongates, it’s about to bolt to produce seed and the plant has passed its prime. Yank the lettuce plant out, toss it on the compost pile, and replant the space with another crop like bush beans, or with another lettuce seedling.

Recipes and Storage

Primarily water, lettuce does not store well. For the best quality and flavor, use homegrown lettuce soon after harvest. This is particularly true for many of the looseleaf varieties, which wilt readily.

Gardening Tips for Beginners

Essential Gardening Tips

Gardening Tip #1: Build on a Good Foundation.

First, you must check the nitrogen and carbon levels in your soil. You want to start with a good foundation to your spring gardening season, and these tips will help. If you have very bad soil, I highly advise that you start with a square foot garden. You can either build a wood box or buy plastic ones from gardeners, which is what I did. You can then add fresh top soil from the store and add mulched and composted leaves. This is the best way to start.

Gardening Tip #2: Ensure Good Drainage.

When you have the square foot garden set up, you must ensure that the drainage is good, otherwise your plants will not survive and your gardening career will be miserable. Be positive that you provide just as much water as the plant needs, and you will know this amount through your gardening experience.

Gardening Tip #3: Provide Lots of Sunlight.

All plant life is totally dependent on the sun. without enough sunlight, the garden will never be strong and probably never sprout. This is absolutely crucial. However, you must ensure that the plants that are in the sun are able to withstand it. All this information is on the back of every seed packet. The square foot garden location should be carefully located according to drainage and sunlight location.

Gardening Tip #4: Make Variety.

For a successful garden, add a lot of variety to your garden. This will help with pests and the soil quality. If you vary the different plants, the insects will tend to not come back due to the uninsurability of what will be in the garden. Also, it is generally known that all farmers rotate their crops for better soil. All gardeners should do just the same!

Gardening Tip #5: Plant at the Proper Time.

This may seem obvious, but it is critical. If you plant the plants too soon, they will be frozen by the frost of early spring and all the work will be for nothing. If too late, they will not be able to gather strength before the sun beats down on them and withers them, or a fall frost eliminates them. Always check the seed packets for this information.

Gardening Tip #6: Jump Start Transplants.

Make positively sure that you buy good and healthy transplants. It is much wiser to spend more money for quality plants that will return a hundredfold in produce to your work. Make sure as well to give the transplants a lot of water, or they will not survive to thrive. However, the growing season is not as long as many people may think, so you have to get the plants into the ground at the proper time, and they will hit the ground running!

Gardening Tip #7: Resist Over-planting.

As a beginning gardener, it is best to just start small. As you perfect all the methods of growing and harvesting different kinds of produce, you will then be able to plant more of what you like.

Gardening Tip #8: Provide Plenty of Nutrients.

After you have planted the seeds and they are thriving, you must make sure that you continue to provide them with nutrients. Depending on the plants you are cultivating, fish emulsion and blood meal are good things to add to the soil. Furthermore, all types of compost such as leaves, kitchen scraps, and other nitrogen rich composts will make your garden flourish. Of course, remember the rule of moderation.

Gardening Tip #9: Detect Pests Early.

As your plants are getting bigger and better, always check for the signs of pests on the plant. Are the leaves holed and chewed? Is the plant dying because of some disease? if so, as a good gardener, you must take the steps to defend your plants. If you are being attacked by deer and rodents, you can put a net or radio out near the garden to distract and scare the pests, and bloodmeal will deter the deer. As for all diseases, there are organic formulas at the store that can help with them.

Gardening Tip #10: Stop Weeds Before They Start.

This is imperative. It is critical when gardening the old fashioned way, because I did not take care of them and they took over the garden in no time. Just a little care every day, saves hours and days of hard and unnecessary labor. Also, some natural prevention of corn gluten meal and a natural herbicide of vinegar may really ease your task of clearing the weeds.