A Beginners Guide to Growing a Veg Garden

Why grow veg? For me it’s ultimately about cooking, with the added incentive of being in nature in a way that I find enjoyable. It’s also better value, seasonal, greener and gives me a feeling of history, past and legacy. It’s about that sudden craving for dark spring greens during March or a taste for swede once the clocks have gone back.

Besides, growing veg should be easy. Sunshine – check! Well, whatever my little corner of Britain gives me. Soil – check! I have plenty of that in the little plot measuring 8ft by 4ft that I’ve set aside for growing my very own. I don’t think that it’s clay-ey but it is quite stone-y.

With that in mind there are a few things I’ve been thinking about:

Slugs – Ugh, yuk! This last year was a great year for slugs but less so for the poor lettuces! I’ve heard that broken up eggshells are a great way to get rid of slugs, as “they are torn to shreds and killed”. Hmm. That sounds unpleasant.

A Beginners Guide to Growing a Veg Garden - Picture source JaimeW

Slugs – yuk

Weeds – the best way to begin a veg plot is to have a blank canvas so to speak. A weed free start. I don’t really want to go down the chemical route, so lifting them – root in tact – is my option. Granted, this is time consuming but you don’t want your beautiful and idyllic veg plot being consumed by weeds.

A Beginners Guide to Growing a Veg Garden

Weeding…the first job

Cheating – am I cheating by growing from plants or sets? No. My motivation is not the process – yet – so I’ll be happy getting produce from anything I’ve nurtured. I’m sure Michelle Obama doesn’t do everything from scratch herself – and we’re both busy ladies!  No I’ll begin by using plants started by someone much more proficient. This includes friends and relations as well as a good trawl around to see what’s available elsewhere….

A Beginners Guide to Growing a Veg Garden - Picture source USDAgov (public domain)

Michelle Obama gardening

So what is my planting project? Garlic, Blueberries, Spring Cabbages, Onions. All seasonal and do-able in my smallish garden. It is far from an allotment but I am lucky enough to have a garden with raised beds as my garden is two level (oooh get me!). The flower (or in my case, vegetable) bed splits the unruly lawn and unkempt compost heap away from the leaf-strewn patio and tired looking garden shed!

A Beginners Guide to Growing a Veg Garden - Picture source Pain Chaud

Onion sets

First job? Weeding…

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