DIY Garden

Tips for creating a self-sustaining garden

Create a garden that provides for basic product needs, making you less dependent on the supermarket, and simply because it is satisfying to harvest your own veggies. Here you will find professional advice to help you prepare and establish your self-sufficient garden.

Use the sun to your advantage

To create a self-sustaining garden, it is crucial to ensure that your vegetable plants receive adequate sunlight. Whenever possible, choose to have the garden facing south so that the vegetable garden receives sufficient sunlight during the day. It is also essential that it remains mostly wind-free. Does your garden have a fence on either side? This proves to be a handy way to limit wind in the garden. And if your garden isn’t that spacious, here you’ll find tips for a small garden.

Choose the right substrate

Next, to create a successful self-sufficient garden, it is necessary to have the correct soil where vegetable plants can thrive. To optimize the quality of your soil, you can mix the soil with compost. Make sure the soil is not too sandy but also not too loamy. Does planting a vegetable garden fit into your garden plan? Follow the steps in this step-by-step plan for creating a garden plan.

Start with small steps

If you are thinking of starting a subsistence food garden, initially choose a select number of vegetables or grain products. It can be satisfying to start with only one or two different vegetables or grains, and the first harvest of potatoes often tastes like more. By taking small steps, you will get the hang of it and create dexterity in the construction of your self-sustaining garden.

Plant according to the season

Different vegetables, grains, and fruits depend on the weather. A subsistence garden can surely provide your family with produce throughout the year but not all at once. Such vegetable gardens can harvest different types of vegetables, grains, or fruits up to at least three times a year. Get informed about the seasons and plan your harvest based on the weather.

Make use of different plots of land

different plots of land

Once you get the hang of it and are ready to sow different vegetables, crop rotation is vital for optimizing a self-sustaining garden to provide the family with harvests throughout the year. If you use crop rotation in your subsistence garden, you need at least six different plots. Differentiate between the plots and familiarise yourself with vegetables that go together and reinforce each other in the growing process. It is also wise to determine which vegetables can contract the same diseases to limit or prevent crop failure.

Choose the right main crop

main crop

Main crops are the showpiece of your vegetable garden, and it is important to make a conscious choice here. These plants often stand the longest in the vegetable garden and can occupy the various plots for longer periods. Think, for example, of zucchini, onion, garlic, cabbage, beet, parsnip, and carrot. Potatoes are also a common main crop vegetable. Head crops generally grow best in the warm summer months. It is recommended to plant these vegetables starting in May. Examples include tomatoes, zucchini, squash, endive, and various types of cabbage.

Plants for the spring

In the spring, you sow the plants that can stand a bit of wear and tear. For example, consider plants that can withstand light frost or rainy days. You can harvest these plants generally between May and early June. Such plants include corn salad, carrots, radishes, turnip greens, rhubarb, cucumber, asparagus, and various herbs.

Plants for the autumn

In the fall, sow the plants that can withstand low temperatures. These can be harvested later in the year. It is essential to sow them preferably in July or August to be able to gather them during the winter. For example, spinach, sprouts, kale, and leeks.

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