Step 3: Creating Good Soil
Step 4: Choose easy crops
To insure success your first year gardening, you’ll want to choose easy crops to grow. Don’t worry, there are lots to choose from!
This is not to say that you couldn’t grow more challenging vegetables like tomatoes and peppers, but as a beginner, my goal for you is to get some experience and success under your belt this year.
Here are some sure bets for your garden:
There are some herbs that are not only easy to grow, they are difficult to contain! Mint is one that comes to mind! There are lots of different seeds and/or plants to choose from and they are typically inexpensive. I would recommend planting them in the pot, especially if you are limited on space. They spread like crazy!
One of my favorites is Chocolate Mint, which I make tea with. Heavenly!
Parsley is another easy one! Look for ways to integrate it into your cooking this year! Fresh herbs totally change the aroma and taste of your dishes! Oregano, dill and thyme are other simple herbs to grow.
Salad veggies like lettuce, spinach, radishes and green onion are extremely easy to grow and be successful with! What a thrill it is to go out to your garden and “pick” your dinner salad!
Green beans are very simple to grow, that’s probably why they use them with the kindergarteners for seed experiments!
Unless you really enjoy the task and/or look of trellising, I would stick with a “bush” bean. That means they do not need to climb something, they will just grow in a “bush-type” shape.
Peas are a lot of fun to grow, but to harvest as well! I like to put them in the dehydrator to dry, and then add them to soups and casseroles over the winter. My family isn’t crazy about peas, but I can “hide” them in other dishes. They are so good for you!
Sunflowers are so majestic when they’re full grown! They grow quite easily in a sunny spot! My greatest challenge is to keep the squirrels from eating the seeds before they germinate! My children love to grow these!
Unless you have a lot of room for them to spread, strawberries should be grown in a container or pot. Getting starters from gardening friends shouldn’t be too difficult, I pawn my “runners” off on anyone who will take them when I’m thinning out my strawberry bed.
Look for pots especially made for strawberries and I recommend the June bearing rather than the year-round. These look so pretty on a balcony or deck!
Final word: Try to avoid the temptation to grab all the wonderful plants and seeds you see on-line and at the garden centers! You will find that if you keep your first year garden very manageable, you will learn more about the few crops you chose to plant and be even more prepared for next year.
It’s not a race, it’s a journey. Enjoy it!