Sustain your family with homegrown veggies
"Grow your own” is now the new garden trend since the arrival of Covid-19 that forced people to stay at home. For some people, growing their own veggies and herbs is a rather unfamiliar undertaking. To others, it comes naturally, and they normally enjoy planting and harvesting from their own garden.
A veggie patch does not even have to be that big at all. Three beds of about one to three square meters would be more than sufficient to do proper crop rotation and have a continuous supply throughout the year. Companion planting will be wise, as some plants do perform better when surrounded by specific species. Deep, well-drained, organic, rich soil will provide best crop performance and the healthier the plants, the fewer pests and disease you will have. Raised vegetable beds are always best, for you can maintain your soil fertility and pH plus your veggies are less prone to soil pathogens.
Going organic as far as possible will provide for healthier vegetables and herbs on your plate. Use organic fertilizers which contain a wider selection of micronutrients. Pests should ideally also be controlled organically, for edible crops need to be free of any harmful chemicals. Organic pesticides are readily available these days and easy to apply.
Watering your vegetable and herb beds would ideally be with drip or micro irrigation. Depending on the size, you will install the appropriate micro and drip systems to suit the need and size of your beds. Most veggies or herbs are fine with overhead watering, although strawberries and tomatoes do better with drip irrigation. Many people plant vegetables and herbs in their normal flower beds, which means that your vegetables and herbs become part of your normal garden. Today there are many decorative vegetables and herbs which easily blend into your flower beds with their colourful foliage and stems, such as the colourful spinach and various colours of lettuce.
Do keep in mind that certain vegetables and herbs do need their fair amount of sunlight and might not perform as well in semi-shade or shady areas like underneath big shade trees or shrubs. Vegetables and herbs grown among your shrubs are also more exposed to normal natural factors and might also not perform as well as those growing in a proper raised bed with the correct soil texture and nutrient content.
Finally, whichever way, the pleasure of being able to harvest from your own garden is a quality of life no money can buy and therapy no doctor can provide.
Just enjoy and grow your own. Eugene le Roux
AgriTurf: Marco de Wet
Cell: 081 600 9584
Eugene le Roux
Cell: 081 124 6965