Summer Vegetable Garden: This is Not Your Grandma’s Vegetable Patch

Vickie Castilleja

The home vegetable garden trend has seen a definite uptick in the last few years. As people become more aware of the benefits of organically and locally grown produce, more and more are starting to plant vegetables in their landscape.

Home vegetable gardens have come a long way since our grandparent’s gardens. Neat rows of vegetables are being replaced with vegetables and herbs mixed with flowering plants in decorative garden beds. Vegetables in pots and interesting containers live happily on patios and balconies. In small spaces, the trend is upward with beautiful vertical gardens.

Not sure when to plant or what might work in our area? There’s an app for that! Smartphone apps are available with planting calendars and plant care information. If using an app, be sure it provides regional information. Even within Texas there are several growing regions.

Another great resource for all things gardening is the Aggie Horticulture website or the Old Farmer’s Almanac site. Both are excellent resources for planting dates and best suited vegetables by region.

There are a few basic tips you should follow before starting your garden:

  • Use a planting calendar specific to your area.
  • Research how many plants per person you need for a good harvest.
  • If planting in the ground, know your soil type and the type of soil your vegetables need.
  • When mixing vegetables and herbs with flowering plants, place them in areas that will be accessible for harvesting.
  • When creating a container or vertical garden, research vegetables that work well in containers.

Growing your own vegetables can be a wonderful family project. It’s a great way to express creativity by mixing food crops in with decorative plants, or building beautiful containers with plants of different colors, textures and heights. And getting your kids involved is a fun way to add a new activity to family time.

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