Small But Mighty – 5 Tips To Start An Intensive Backyard Garden

If you want a vegetable garden, having a small yard can seem like an insurmountable obstacle. But there are ways to grow your favorite veggies even if space is at a premium. Here are 5 tips for the newbie gardener.

Ditch the Rows. Neat rows of vegetables is what comes to mind for most people when planning a garden. But you can save a lot of space and even lower your maintenance by using smaller raised beds or open beds with a more clustered layout – often planned out in only 1 foot square segments. Doing so may give you the chance to grow more crops, move around less and block out more weeds.

Make Use of Variety. Different plants have different spreads, heights and root systems. They also attract or repel different pests. You can squeeze more greens into the same space and help them thrive together if you plant the right things near each other – a system called "companion planting." If you have trouble determining what to plant together, consult with a landscaping professional.

Grow Up. To maximize your garden's square footage, plant a few things that can grow upward rather than take up space. Trellises make excellent tools for growing things like peas, beans, cucumbers and tomatoes. You can also make use of the garden fence to use as a makeshift trellis.

Add New Things as You Go. Most people plant all their vegetables at once, usually in the spring after the weather changes. But you can take advantage of empty spaces in your garden as plants grow and are harvested. Start early with cold weather peas, for example, then replace them with tomatoes or peppers once the peas have been harvested. Look for plants with both long and short growing seasons to mix-and-match. 

Rotate Plants. Avoid overtaxing your soil by ensuring that you rotate plants each year. Because each plant will use certain nutrients from the soil, a good rotation schedule ensures that your garden will stay vital and alive for many seasons. If you have a small, intensive garden, it's important to write down what plants are placed in what locations so that you can rotate them the following season.

Intensive gardening is a great way to make use of a small space and learn more about how to garden successfully. But the result will be worth it as you fill your table with hearty food from your own backyard. Pop over here for more information.