Community Horticulture Fact Sheet #47 Intensive Vegetable Gardening 600 128th Street SE, Everett, WA 98208-6353 425-338-2400 • Fax: 425-338-3994 • Master Gardeners: 425-357-6010 • TDD 1 -800-833-6388 Foot paths are only between the beds. Rain gutters provide an ideal space … Building and preparing an organic garden using natural No Dig Gardening methods Easy steps for building a vegetable garden. Establishing permanent beds enables you to concentrate your efforts only on where plants grow, without wasting compost or irrigation water on unplanted areas. 8. Soil, climate, weather, water availability, composting materials, pests and diseases vary depending on where you live, so learn from local experts and look for information written for your region. Fresh veggies from garden to table in as little as 8 weeks. Apply no chemicals. I leave mulch on the soil for as much of the garden season as possible (weeds grow all winter in my Northwest climate), but I pull it back in spring to allow the soil to dry out and warm up. If you have a limited amount of garden space that gets enough sun, or there are other reasons you can't go larger, then the intensive vegetable gardening principles may be the right choice for you. You can even try square-foot gardening in wooden boxes on a balcony. This type of companion planting makes it possible to grow more in the same space. For a large garden with more space, however, growing compostable or “green manure” crops may be the most practical way to build the organic matter in your soil. http://theperpetualpantry.com/quick-reference-chart-vegetables/. If your yard provides partial shade, plant vegetables and herbs that tolerate those conditions (lettuce, kale, chard, spinach, chives, cilantro, parsley, and thyme). His primary goal is to grow food sustainably, using as few inputs from outside of the system as possible. Double digging the beds, by removing the top 10 inches of soil and loosening the soil below with a garden fork, will allow better aeration and water tranport. They don’t need to be elaborate, but recording when and what you plant, harvest dates, and notes on pest problems is a good idea so you have this information and can make well-informed adjustments when you plan next year’s garden. 6. Other good reasons to convert from rows to an intensive garden system: Less effort. You might need to fertilize more frequently, but what you use will go where it is needed, and not be wasted on walking paths. I often leave crop residues on the soil as a mulch and plant right through it. Or, don’t make compost at all: Just leave organic material on the soil to decompose. The use of these strategies will help contribute to the overall good health of the garden and create a small ecosystem that is sure to be enjoyed by both the gardener and beneficial insects. The soil must be very loamy and fertile. They advocate r… These methods will produce far more per square foot. Intensively plant a prescribed number of each crop you choose to grow into each grid space, depending on plant size. Once these plants are harvested, a new crop can be sown for harvesting in fall. Suggestions? 9. Even intensive beds that are very small will grow a huge yield of produce. … 2. 5. Jeavons’ biointensive gardening system is based on developing fertile soil in permanent garden beds that you initially dig to a depth of 2 feet. Intensive gardening combines many of the other vegetable growing methods mentioned on this website. 7. It incorporates multiple beds. Planting crops that have a high yield per square foot makes better use of … Well said. The traditional in ground garden is usually planted in straight rows, a few feet apart. The principles of include going vertical, by the use of trellises and cages for large plants that ordinarily would sprawl everywhere. The Intensive Garden is one of the 7 family size gardens that are being trailed as part of the RED Garden Project. Square-foot gardening calls for purchasing a large amount of peat moss, which isn’t a renewable material. Most of us prefer to have a continuous supply of fresh tomatoes during the growing season anyway. Rows of lettuce in raised beds make a space-saving, productive addition to your patio. For example, plant one broccoli per square and plant 16 carrots per square.) Raised beds — constructed with sides to allow the soil to be built up higher than the natural soil level — allow for good drainage on low-lying land and warm up quickly in spring. Higher yields 2. Root vegetables like carrots, radishes, and beets might also work if your site gets at least 4 hours of direct sunlight a day. He asserts that this flexible, ecological methodology is as important for soil fertility as it is for his economic success. The Pros of Intensive Gardening. It's so easy—all you need are a few materials and a vision for your future garden. The Ohio State University Extension has listed several benefits of gardening in a raised bed. Similarly, a 1998 study by Ohio State University found no significant yield difference between beans and beets grown in beds that had been cultivated only on the surface and beds that had been double-dug. I know it’s all about “reading definitions” but it really helps if you understand these intensive vegetable gardening concepts before you try to do them. Ease of pest control 5. Intensive Planting Techniques are practiced with several goals in mind: they minimize soil compaction, allow you to plant in challenging or difficult locations, solve drainage issues, eliminate the need for tilling, increase vegetable and herb production, and conserve water. What's the easiest way to grow more vegetables with little labour - and fewer pests? It also reduces disease and insect infestations that could become severe if the same areas are used each year for something like tomatoes. Achieve staggered harvests with succession planting. This can, however, require a slight shift from the “clean soil” garden aesthetic some value. Check out “10 Tenets of Square-Foot Gardening” below for more on this method. Use synergistic planting (also called “companion planting”) so that plants grown together enhance each other. Research has provided sound reasons why minimizing soil disturbance is a good idea: Reduced-tillage systems result in higher populations of beneficial fungi that move nutrients and water through the soil column. Don’t despair; get creative. The use of intensive vegetable gardening methods can increase the yield per square foot by a great amount. Feb 14, 2013 - by Peggy Layton Are you interested in gardening, but you have limited space? The use of intensive vegetable gardening methods can increase the yield per square foot by a great amount. I've used it in my in ground garden for years. Water conservation A raised bed should be just wide enough that you can reach all the way across without climbing into it (or, if you can acce… I love this article. Of course, if your best sunny spot is a paved parking lot, by all means, build raised beds (the deeper, the better). Space crops tightly in a hexagonal planting pattern. For the rest of the season, I plant without cultivating, allowing easy interplanting by slipping in new plants between maturing crops. When I initially encountered Jeavons’ book in the 1970s, I set out to follow his technique for double-digging my garden. It also wastes fertilizer and water. Deep-rooted plants will also survive cold snaps and heat waves better than plants in containers and raised beds because their roots are subjected to less-extreme temperature swings. Learn how to build, double dig, and maintain your own Chinese-style intensive bed. Gardens on well-drained soil, however, may fare better and need less water if the beds are not raised — and, of course, you won’t have the job and expense of building sides for your beds. 6. Despite Bartholomew’s concern that improving soil takes too long, I’ve found that adding organic amendments, including balanced organic fertilizers if needed, can turn any soil into decent garden soil in its first few seasons. (To keep such records digitally, try the MOTHER EARTH NEWS Vegetable Garden Planner.). I saw no difference between the double-dug bed and the rest of the garden throughout that summer or in later years. High-density mixed planting. A raised bed is simply when the level of the soil is higher than the surrounding ground. Weeding is, for most, a dreaded task, but it can be almost eliminated by smart planting. account? One of my problems is compost: I just don't generate enough to create any. That's why we want you to save money and trees by subscribing through our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. If you can use tomato cages, for example, then you can plant your tomatoes about 18-20 inches apart instead of 2-3 feet apart. 4. Order John Jeavons’ book How to Grow More Vegetables, which details the complete biointensive growing system. How To Grow Lettuce In A Rain Gutter Plant salad greens in rain gutters. If you have a tiny urban garden, you aren’t likely to be able to grow a considerable amount of grain crops for supplying carbonaceous compostable materials, as Jeavons suggests doing. 10. This works best for indeterminate tomatoes, those that will set fruit several times per season and keep producing until frost. To do this it requires great understanding of your microclimate, crop selection (especially cold-hardy crops like these ones) and careful garden planning.Because there’s always lots to do in a year-round garden I wanted to share this guide. Crops that root deeply such as parsnips, carrots and tomatoes, can be intercropped with shallow vegetables such as broccoli, lettuce and potatoes.Fast growing plants, like spinach, can be tucked in around slow maturing plants like corn. The organic matter in compost also increases soil’s water-holding capacity and improves its texture. 3. 3. She gardens in British Columbia and is the author of several gardening books, most recently Backyard Bounty: The Complete Guide to Year-Round Organic Gardening in the Pacific Northwest. Less soil compaction. Each year you should rotate the areas used for particular vegetables. Here is a cool free reference chart for planting and growing vegetables. Use soil (if you have it). The space you have available and the ease with which you can transport materials will also influence your gardening decisions. Adding plenty of compost is fundamental to intensive gardening. Plant dual-purpose, carbon-efficient crops — such as grains — in about 60 percent of the growing area. In fact, in very hot areas it is better not to have them raised as the soil will heat up too much. Generous applications of compost increase the nutrient- and water-holding capacity of sandy soils and improve the structure of clay soils. 1. Raised beds are not the answer for all gardeners lacking space. This method is a LOT of work the first year. Care and Cultivation of Permanent Garden Beds, Backyard Bounty: The Complete Guide to Year-Round Organic Gardening in the Pacific Northwest. Despite such differing approaches, both sets of techniques deliver high-yielding food gardens thanks to four common features, all of which I recommend. The goal here is to produce a lot of food in a very small area, by putting in some serious manual labor to produce perfect planting beds and intensive plantings. You'll find tips for slashing heating bills, growing fresh, natural produce at home, and more. Leaf lettuce can be planted on either side of radishes and onions, and will be harvested before mid summer. The 1-by-1-foot grid pattern, a trademark of square-foot gardening, can help intensive growers portion out and make the most of limited bed space. By paying with a credit card, you save an additional $5 and get 6 issues of MOTHER EARTH NEWS for only $12.95 (USA only). Permanent, intensive beds in the vegetable garden is a centuries-old practice that has stood the test of time because it is so effective. given to a way of using garden space and soil nutrients to produce high yields of flavorful crops. The goal is to have the plants just, or almost, touching by time of harvest. Two gardening authors and their systems of intensive vegetable gardening have been highly influential in North America for more than 30 years. Choose High-yield Crops. Interspersing crops with different root depths, plant heights and growth rates also means you can grow more in a given space. Prompt succession planting. International Subscribers - Click Here This upward movement of water can come from a depth of 2 to 8 feet, depending on the type of soil. Hi, thanks for stopping by. Follow these natural gardening instructions for success no matter where you live or the condition of your soil. The beds are never stepped on, so the soil stays fluffy and not compacted for excellent growth of plants. Like to read more content, Join the Mother Earth News Community Today! I quickly discovered, despite Jeavons’ cheery instructions, that this was a daunting amount of work. (Connect with nearby gardeners on MOTHER EARTH NEWS' new Facebook pages for each state and province.) 3. The French intensive gardening method also helps with diversifying space, as it frequently utilizes additional gardening techniques like interplanting and companion planting. Reducing the use of nonrenewable resources — whether it’s fossil fuels burned in transporting supplies, irrigation water from deep aquifers or even peat moss — is an important consideration and one that’s on many gardeners’ minds. With imagination and determination, you can find ways to grow vegetables … Creating minimal disturbance has led to a bountiful garden with less work on my part. 2. Three ways to garden intensively are spacing plants closely together, intercropping, and succession cropping. (Go to Free, Homemade Liquid Fertilizers for more information on this method and other liquid fertilizer options.). Intensive Vegetable Gardening-Gardening Advice for Small Spaces. Perhaps the ultimate in cheap fertilizer is “pee-cycling,” which merits wider acceptance for its effectiveness. Sow only the number of seeds needed in each square to avoid wasting seed. Tire gardening. Essentially, you crowd them together. Add no fertilizer; rely on the compost in the growing medium for nutrients. Aug 6, 2020 - Explore Traylynn's board "Intensive Gardening" on Pinterest. It also makes soil compaction a nonissue, because you walk on permanent pathways and never on your growing areas. Already a Member? Solar Gardening: Growing Vegetables Year-Round the American Intensive Way: Poisson, Leandre, Poisson, Gretchen Vogel, Wimbiscus, Robin: 9780930031695: Books - Amazon.ca 9. The space you save by going vertical with these large plants can then be used for interplanting, another principle of intensive vegetable gardening. After you know what problems occur in your region, you know which crops to rotate. You can control weeds in pathways by laying down cardboard, newspaper or other light-excluding materials, or sow the pathways to grass or clover and mow (or scythe) them every now and then. For example, companion-planting charts of the “tomatoes love basil” variety are largely myth, though the value of planting to cycle nutrients to different crop families and attract beneficial insects is well-established (go to Maintain Healthy Soil With Crop Rotation for more). Intensive Vegetable Production refers to a system of marketing and producing vegetable crops in which great attention is placed on detail and optimization of resources such as land, capital, labor, equipment, transportation to market and management time. 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