Step 4 – Planting Your Crops
Look for cultivars with disease resistance, especially if specific diseases have been a problem. Pay attention to the cultivars that are grown successfully by neighbors and become familiar with those recommended by your local Uni Ag Department.
To get the most from your garden grow the vegetables that:
- You and your family like to eat;
- Contain the most nutrition (e.g. sweet potato, kale, pepper, broccoli);
- Are most expensive to purchase in a grocery store (e.g. garlic, leeks, herbs); and
- Are easiest to grow (e.g. tomato, greens, beans, cucumbers, and squash).
Planting your Crops
- Check the vegetable profiles section of this site to determine whether a particular vegetable is best direct-seeded in the ground or whether its seeds have to be planted indoors and grown to transplant size. You will also learn the best times to plant and how to care for your vegetable crops.
- Large seeds, such as pumpkin, squash, bean, and corn, can usually be planted at the correct spacing. It is much more difficult to precisely plant small seeds. You should expect to thin out excess seedlings later to achieve the desired spacing.
- You can buy seeds in local stores or through “mail order” companies with web sites.
Using Transplants (Starter Plants)
- Transplants raised inside or in a greenhouse should be exposed gradually to outdoor temperatures and conditions; this is called “hardening off.”
- Transplant on a cloudy windless afternoon if possible, and water well; handle plants carefully and make sure there is adequate room for the roots in the planting hole.
If you buy seedlings to transplant, make sure they look healthy and are not so large that the roots encircle the bottom of the plant.
Reuse market packs to plant seeds for transplants. Fertilize after planting. Water daily.
What veggies should you transplant vs direct seed?
Tomato, pepper, eggplant, cabbage, broccoli, herbs. You can also grow or buy melon, squash, kale, lettuce, and other veggie transplants. Transplants fill the space quickly; no need to thin out excess seedlings.
Spacing – how close is too close?
It is tempting to squeeze more seeds or transplants into a small garden. Deep, fertile soil and attention to watering, weeds, and fertilizing may allow you to tighten up plant spacing a bit. But pushing the envelope too far will cause a decline in yield and plant problems. Follow spacing recommendations in the vegetable profiles section guidelines and on seed packets for best results.
Correct spacing for big onions
Okra plants are too close **********
Zone Maps of the World
There are 7 climate zones on-line: each will tell you which parts of the area covered correspond to each respective USDA zone. Each has a zone and temperature key to help you. For example, if you see a plant listed as “Zone 7″, and you live in New York (Zone 6), you know that the plant won’t be hardy outside.