Beginners guide to your home garden

When the word kitchen gardens is mentioned, the image that runs through our mind is a huge backyard lush with vegetables, fruits and herbs tended by retired couples or assigned gardeners.

But if anything the recent pandemic has taught us is that we have to rely and be ready to self-produce in the near future. So, people are leaning towards home grown plants. Youth and not just the retired forks are keen on doing so. It enables the people to have fertilizer and pesticide free vegetable and herbs grown in their balconies, terrace or verandas, which is therapeutic and you develop a new hobby. So, if you are a kitchen garden newbie, who wants to start their own garden, here are some tips.

Step 1: Sunlight- This is crucial for the plant you have decided to grow. Find the appropriate place where you can have optimum sunlight for the plant to nourish and grow. It could be a window sill, balcony, veranda or terrace. For photosynthesis to occur the plants need maximum exposure to sunlight. So, accesses where the rays can reach more, to grow more.

Step 2: Pots/Vessels- Well, it does not necessarily mean you go out and buy earthen pots in bulk. Plastic bottle, creates, tins, tetra packs, metallic, ceramic or wooden pots do the trick as well. Choose the container as per your choice and the space available for gardening. Then plant the seeds as desired, while keep in mind not to plant many seeds in one pot. Plants like children need space to grow in order to produce the best result.

Step 3: Soil- This is as much necessary as the sun. After selecting the sunny spot and desired pot, now comes the time to choose the right type of soil. The soil composition should be, such that, 50% must contain regular soil and the other half should be compost. You can make home grown compost containing bio-degradable household waste like vegetable and fruit stalks, peels, leaves; egg shells, manure and coconut husks. Nowadays, nurseries are selling ready-made potting soil, you just buy them instead of mixing your own soil. The correct type of soil determines the nourishment your plant would get so choose wisely.

Step 4: Seed and Sapling- All the efforts you put up till now is for this step. Seed/ Saplings can be brought online, from the nearest nursery or by joining social media groups like Facebook that assure you on the seed quality as well as become your supporting squads and swap seed samples. Opt for pollinated seed than the hybrid ones. Once you have decided and potted the seeds cover the pot with net till the sprout to prevent birds and squirrels from eating them.

Step 5: Water- Regularly water the plants, but don’t over water them otherwise you do more harm than good resulting in washing off the nutrients from the soil. You may water them twice during summer ,but can choose to do so every other day in winter, check the soil by pressing your fingers for moisture and then water if required.

Step 6: Maintenance- Regularly check the plant for insects to prevent breeding. In case you do find bugs on the plant spray it with Neem water, which might help keep the insects at bay.  

For all your hard work you will finally be able to reap the benefits of your handwork n the form of home grown vegetables or herbs that is 100% organic.

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