Growing your own veggies is much easier than you think. Learn how to start a garden of your own and enjoy a fresh bounty this spring and summer.

Being cooped up during this seemingly endless quarantine has made our normal activities a real challenge this past year, and simply shopping for groceries has been high up on that list.

For so many of us, the arrival of spring has made the idea of growing our own food at home all the more appealing.

There are so many great reasons to start your own home garden.

Nothing beats the convenience of simply grabbing the ingredients you need for dinner at a moment’s notice right on your own turf, and truly, does anything taste better than homegrown, fresh vegetables and herbs straight from the ground?

Gardening also gets you outside and moving, and fills you with a real sense of pride and satisfaction as you watch your produce grow from seeds or scraps to beautifully ripe. Of course, growing your own food also ensures you are not ingesting harmful pesticides, too.

Curious about what it takes to create your own home garden? Read on to learn the simple steps to get you on your way!

Getting started on a home garden

Plan your location. Is there a spot in your yard that receives at least 6 hours of sunlight a day? Once you have found an ideal space, decide whether you would like to grow your vegetables in a raised bed, a container, or in the ground.  

A raised bed lets you control the quality of your soil and works well when planting a variety of plants.

A container garden consists of a container, like a pot, with holes at the bottom and includes rocks for drainage, potting mix, and either seeds or starter plants.

An in-ground garden is the solution if you are looking to plant a bigger garden. Remove any weeds, rocks, or existing plants, and plant seeds or starter plants in rows.

Ask the pros. While there are general guidelines for which crops grow best in a given garden configuration, it is always a good idea to ask the local gardening pros to learn which plants grow well within your immediate area. Carrots, tomatoes, lettuce, radishes, and sweet peppers, strawberries, and herbs are usually great veggies to start.

Know and nourish your soil. Choose a potting mix that stays moist and drains well but is not left soggy. Check your soil’s moisture regularly and water it in the morning when the top layer is dry. Enrich your soil by adding aged compost matter, which can readily be bought at the nursery. Watering daily, maintaining your soil, and keeping your garden free and clear of debris is the secret to gardening success.

Keep weeds in check. Keeping weeds away from your vegetables is important because they compete for valuable sunlight, water, and nutrients. Mulch around your veggies to block the weeds’ access to sunlight and curb their growth.

Remember that timing is everything. Different veggies thrive during different periods of time, so keep this in mind when you start your planting. For example, carrots, lettuce, and broccoli love cooler early spring temps, whereas corn, tomatoes, peppers, and cucumbers grow best in the hot summer sun.

Regrowing veggies from scraps

An effortless way to get a kick start on growing your favorite vegetable is by growing it from its scraps. Certain vegetables grow new roots after some time, and we can use these rooting sections to regrow the vegetables once again. Potatoes, sweet potatoes, celery, onions, carrots, beets, lettuce, cabbage, basil, and mint, are all veggies that can be regrown from their scraps. Most often all that is required is to submerge the vegetable scrap in a shallow bowl of water, after which the roots will grow further and then they can be planted into the ground.