Campus News

First-time gardeners enjoy success

You can make your first vegetable garden a success with tips from George Boyhan, a Cooperative Extension horticulturist.
• Plan ahead. A vegetable garden of any size needs full sunlight, access to water and adequate drainage. Put the garden near an outside door of your home, and you’re more likely to weed and water.
• Smaller is better for beginners. But like most hobbies, gardening can be as elaborate or as simple as you want.
• Buy established plants from a local nursery and transplant them into the garden soil.
If you start from seeds, grow large-seed ­vegetables such as melons, pumpkins and beans, which have fairly resilient seeds.
• Decide what vegetables you intend to eat. Some that grow particularly well in Georgia include tomatoes, bush beans, Southern peas, squash, zucchini and, surprisingly, eggplant.
• Plan to plant your vegetable garden in early spring when there’s no threat of frost. “Salt and pepper” the ground with 10-10-10 fertilizer before you plant and then again when the plants are well established.
• Water your garden 1 inch weekly using
a rain gauge. Thirty to 40 minutes of water from a sprinkler twice a week should do the trick.