Spring means it’s time to grow up

With spring upon us and rising food prices, there’s never been a better time to start growing your own food.

If you have no gardening experience, this can seem overwhelming and sometimes downright impossible, but the good news is that it isn’t.

Urban Veggie Patch founder Lee Sullivan is a firm believer that anyone can grow their own food, even those with the blackest thumbs.

All it takes, she says, is some solid prep work and anyone can be well on their way to producing delicious, nutrient-dense produce, saving money and feeding the whole family.

  1. Capture the sun

The positioning of your garden is crucial to your growing success. Vegetables need sun and lots of sun. Choose a location that receives at least six hours of sunlight per day. Basically, find the sunniest spot in your yard and put your garden there.

2. Don’t skimp on the floor

The soil you use in your garden will have a direct effect on the growth of your vegetables. Healthy soil will produce healthy plants. It can be tempting to go out and buy cheap dirt bags to save money, but don’t. Buying good quality soil rich in organic matter is an investment in the future of your garden. A good option is to locate a local flooring supplier and order from them. Most locations will have a specific organic soil mix for the vegetable garden. If that’s not possible, you can buy bags of high-quality organic soil and a few bags of compost and sheep or cow manure.

3. Understand your climate and plant in season

When deciding what to plant, it’s important to consider your climate and research what’s in season. Spring is an incredible time to plant in our region. Things you can plant now include tomatoes, zucchini, cucumbers, eggplant, peppers, beans, corn, and bell pepper to name a few.

4. Plant for pollinators

Your patch needs pollinators. Encouraging bees and other pollinators in your garden will result in quality produce and many harvests. Plant flowers and herbs they like such as basil, lavender, borage and marigolds.

5. Compost

Starting a compost bin at home is simple and not only does it help reduce your footprint on the earth, it will also help nourish and improve your soil in the long run.

6. Enjoy the journey and don’t let failure discourage you

You won’t have a perfect race. Gardening is about learning from experience and persevering. Some of the greatest lessons you will learn about growing will come from the most epic failures. The key is that you keep moving forward and commit to enjoying the journey.