Spring is here mis amigos, and since deciding before 2014 that I wanted to start growing my own food, I have been on a frugal journey to save money, live well, and make money from home. Gardening was something I decided to do because I wanted to save money on groceries, I wanted to get a little bit of self-sufficiency.
Keep in mind that I've never grown anything in my life. My grandparents in Puerto Rico grew some of their own food, but we never managed to pay attention to that. Starting a garden was something that I wanted to do, and set my mind to do.
What I didn't anticipate was how much I was going to love it. Not only how much money we saved on groceries, but how delicious the vegetables were, how much I would love it, and how much others enjoyed my garden. The benefits of gardening are amazing, and even as a beginner gardener, I learned so much during my first time at growing my own vegetables.
I'm not going to lie and say that I wasn't worried that I was going to end up killing my plants. Before starting my garden last year, I did my research. I Googled a lot about gardening, but still I was afraid that I was going to fail miserably when it came to my garden.
Did I make some beginner gardening mistakes? Absolutely, and I'm pretty sure that I will make some beginner gardener mistakes this year too! That doesn't mean that I will not try it again. For that reason alone, I wrote this post How Not To Fail At Gardening, To helps us beginner gardeners to successfully grow our gardens this year.
How Not To Fail At Gardening
Create a gardening plan for beginner gardeners – If this is your first year at attempting to grow something green, then you need to start your gardening plans. Write what you want and start researching.
Stick to small – As much as we imagine our beautiful gardens to be and how many vegetables we want, the reality is that we need to stick to small. Gardening requires work, and if you don't have the space nor the time to invest in a big garden, I suggest you start small.
Research what you want to plant – Don't plant plants that require a lot of work. Each plant requires different care. They require different amounts of sunlight and different temperatures. Some plants are great for summer, and others for fall. Not sure what to plant as a beginner gardener? Start with these:
- Lettuce – I planted a few of these last year and throughout the season. I followed the instructions on the seed packet and did extremely good with them. I have to admit that nothing beats a fresh salad from the garden.
- Peppers – Again, I grew pepper plants last year and did very well. This is something that if I can do, anyone else can.
- Tomatoes – I was impressed with the amount of tomatoes we harvested last year. We even made homemade tomato sauce.
- Herbs – I have to group this because I bought my herbs from the Dollar Tree, and that was the best investment ever.
Location, location, LOCATION! – If you want your garden to thrive, you must know where to set it. First, let me just say that you need to place your garden where it can be seen. Out of sight, out of mind. You need to make sure you tend to your garden, remove any weeds, and pest regularly. Also, remember that depending on what you're planting, sunlight and the amount it gets is important. Placing your garden where the sun don't shine (LOL – grow up!), will not help your plants.
Another important thing to remember when setting your garden, make sure you are close to water. Don't place your garden in the back of the house, and your hose is in the front of the house. This will make for hard work my friend.
Learn about companion planting – I learned about this last year and honestly, I didn't know about this at all. Thanks to planning and researching, I was so glad I did. Companion planting means growing plants together that are alike or are a benefit to each other. Because we are beginner gardeners, companion planting may sound complicated, but thanks to the internet, we are able to find charts that shows us and informs us about which plant goes with who and why.
For this reason, I found this great reference guide for companion planting to help you with your garden. You can check it out here. This is very important information to know before you start planting your garden.
Gardening is such a great thing to do and I encourage you to at least start small. Gardening saves you money, it's good for you and your family. With these tips, you can succeed at starting your own garden for the first time. If I managed to do it last year, I know you can too. These tips for How Not To Fail At Gardening will help you have a successful gardening season.
When it comes to gardening, what other helpful tips you have for us beginner gardeners to avoid failing?
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