Spring is generally considered the best time of the year to start sowing your vegetables and fruits, so here’s our guide to sowing some of the most popular edibles in your own garden or balcony
There isn’t much space required to grow your garlic. Simply plant each garlic clove alongside each other, with a little distance between each (four to six inches apart), with the rows being spaced one foot apart. Ensure the pointed end of the cloves are facing upwards and the blunt end downwards. Push each clove about one to two inches into the spoil, firm the soil surrounding them, and water the bed if it becomes too dry.
Should be planted in fertile, well-drained soil
Once planted, cover with some straw, chopped leaves or grass clippings, approximately four inches thick
Another versatile wonder in the kitchen, and the basis for any great salad! Before you plant your lettuce seeds, make sure the soil is prepared well. It should be loose and drain easily, remaining moist but without staying soggy. Feed the soil with composted organic matter about one week before you plant the seeds, so to keep the soil fertile. In this case, a well-filled seedbed would be ideal, due to the seeds being so small.
Placing stones and large clods of dirt on top of the soil will prevent germination
Planting rows of chives or garlic between your lettuces will help to control aphids
They can be one of the tastiest crops to grow, and they tend to be much sweeter than shop-bought ones. To ensure you get the best quality tomatoes, pick the sunniest part of your garden. Plant the seedlings thirty to forty-eight inches apart, with rows set forty-eight inches distance apart. By allowing for substantial distance like this, sunlight is welcomed through into the lower portions of the plants, improving airflow.
Plant with plenty of depth – the extra root growth will produce a stronger, more robust plant
Blackberries and raspberries
Compared to other, more common berries, raspberries and blackberries (often referred to as caneberries) grow slightly differently. Plant your berries about two to three feet apart from one another. Not only will this allow for good air circulation, but it will also help prevent against disease. When planting, ensure the crown is as close as possible to the level where it was growing before. To help protect them further, try adding a three to four inch layer of organic mulch, as raspberries and blackberries tend to have shallow roots.
Full sun and well-drained soil are a must for blackberries and raspberries; and make sure the soil is rich in organic matter to ensure peak performance
A great idea is to conduct a soil test to ensure your berries are getting the correct kind of soil they need for good nutrition
How to grow edibles on a balcony
Don’t think that you need a garden or allotment in order to grow fruit and vegetables. If you only have a balcony, there will still be plenty of horticultural potential for you to indulge in. Strawberries, for example, are a fantastic fruit to grow on your balcony, because they can be grown vertically against a wall very easily.
Another great starting point would be herbs, because they’re brilliantly appropriate for balconies. Hardy aromatic herbs easily tolerate the exposed conditions of a balcony. Incorporating the likes of rosemary, lavender and thyme into your planting plans would be wise indeed, given their immense gastronomic versatility. Furthermore, all herbs have high value and low space requirements, and on almost every day of the year they will give you something to pick!
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