Fall is almost here, which means the best time of year to start growing vegetables in your garden. However, fall is also nearing, which means the peak season for growing vegetables in Florida is just around the corner. Growing vegetables in Florida between late summer and fall is lots of fun, and will fill your refrigerator with tons of great food. The most popular vegetables to grow are sweet potatoes, onions, squash, zucchini, peas, peppers, tomatoes, and leafy greens like kale and cabbage. These are grown primarily in Florida, but there are many other great vegetables that can be grown in your garden as well.
To get the most out of growing vegetables in Florida, you need to start them sooner rather than later. Plant seeds indoors in the fall, just before the last frosts, to give those seeds enough time to sprout and flourish. Fall vegetable gardening in Florida can be very productive, even with temperatures dropping by the dozens during the colder months of the year. Start seeds indoors in early spring, when temperatures are still moderate, but not freezing, to germinate and begin to grow. There is no need to water or fertilize those seeds once they have sprouted, so there is no need to wait until the natural growing season in the fall.
Vegetable gardens need at least one set of leaves each month during the growing season, so keep some fresh vegetable crops at hand. You should keep a hand full of these vegetables growing on your kitchen windowsill or outside in a raised bed throughout the growing season. Those vegetables growing outdoors in a raised bed are great for growing in deeper containers for winter storage. Keep your garden in a shady, warm area for the best results. Some varieties of tomatoes, peppers, squash, onions, and cabbage can be damaged by frost. In order to avoid this, try to plant your vegetables during cooler times of the year.
When you are ready to harvest your vegetables in the garden, remember that you must dig out all the weeds before harvesting. It is also wise to plant some medicinal herbs at this time as well. Fresh basil, mint, or tarragon can be used for this purpose. As you tend your garden, check regularly for insects and worms. Good organic pesticides will go a long way in keeping pests away from your vegetables, herbs, or your kitchen garden.
Most of your planting and gardening chores can be accomplished quickly and easily with an automated tiller or cultivator. A tiller can easily be used to aerate seeds. Aerating is one of the steps in germination and seedling development. This helps move the live seeds along the growing medium and assists in their proper dissemination across the soil. Cultivating your kitchen garden with an aerator is really quite simple. If you have a large area to work, try using two rows of these equipment for spreading evenly and quickly.
Preparing the soil for your kitchen garden should be done with care. When purchasing your seeds or plants, be sure to buy ones that are very fine grained and firm. These make for stronger root systems which will help your vegetables and herbs to grow healthy.
Most gardeners agree that tomatoes are by far the most popular vegetable for kitchen gardening. While they do grow quite large and require plenty of room to grow, they are generally easy to maintain. Keep in mind that most herbs like a cooler climate so they will benefit most by being planted during the colder months of the year. Some popular growing herbs for your kitchen gardening include basil, chives, dill, parsley, sage, and rosemary.
One of the best things about most intensive gardening methods is the fact that you are able to watch the crops grow from seed to harvest over a number of years. The most important test garden tip involves seeing how much growth you get from each plant. If you get too much, you need to replant the seeds or cut them back so you end up with fewer plants per square foot in your garden.