Starting a Vegetable Garden - Knowledgebase Question

Wilmington, DE
Question by ltdav
August 10, 1998
I am a rookie in the true sense. I am starting a vegetable garden for next year. I have laid out an area of 8'x8' with landscape timbers. What is the correct way to prepare my soil and when should I plant my tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers?


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Answer from NGA
August 10, 1998

0

and larger critters) into your compost, turn it once in a while, and it will rot down to beautiful humus. There are lots of publications on composting out there, and I'll bet your extension service even offers one.

If you can get your soil tilling and improvement done by the end of the month, you may have enough time to start some cucumbers, but for best results, wait until next spring to start the crops you've listed. Tomato and peppers transplants can be put out in the garden in late April, when the danger of frost has passed and the soil has warmed. Cukes seeds should be sown directly in the garden soil at about the same time. Again, I'll bet your extension office has a calendar of planting times and tips for vegetable gardeners -- they can provide you with a wealth of information. We're always here if you have specific questions their literature doesn't answer. I also recommend a couple of great gardening books for beginners: Real Gardeners' True Confessions, by Pat Stone (Storey Publications, Pownal VT), is a collection of stories and instruction from gardeners who learned the hard way, and want to pass on the knowledge gained from making LOTS of mistakes, so hopefully you won't have to repeat them! Another is Burpee's Complete Vegetable and Herb Gardener (available on their main webpage). Here's to you and your first garden!
and larger critters) into your compost, turn it once in a while, and it will rot down to beautiful humus. There are lots of publications on composting out there, and I'll bet your extension service even offers one.

If you can get your soil tilling and improvement done by the end of the month, you may have enough time to start some cucumbers, but for best results, wait until next spring to start the crops you've listed. Tomato and peppers transplants can be put out in the garden in late April, when the danger of frost has passed and the soil has warmed. Cukes seeds should be sown directly in the garden soil at about the same time. Again, I'll bet your extension office has a calendar of planting times and tips for vegetable gardeners -- they can provide you with a wealth of information. We're always here if you have specific questions their literature doesn't answer. I also recommend a couple of great gardening books for beginners: Real Gardeners' True Confessions, by Pat Stone (Storey Publications, Pownal VT), is a collection of stories and instruction from gardeners who learned the hard way, and want to pass on the knowledge gained from making LOTS of mistakes, so hopefully you won't have to repeat them! Another is Burpee's Complete Vegetable and Herb Gardener (available on their main webpage). Here's to you and your first garden!

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