Hello, readers! Do you want to maximize and improve your garden yield? Handyman here to give you 7 tips to help increase your garden yield.
If you want to make the most of your vegetable garden space in production, then this post will help you to achieve just that. I do these 7 things in my vegetable garden, and they have helped me. I am sure they will also help you to maximize and improve your garden yield.
The 7 Ways to Improve Your Garden Yield
Tip 1: Square-foot Gardening (with Companion Planting Guide)
If you want to maximize the yield of your plants, first you’ll want to maximize your growing space. Square-foot gardening is where you plant as many plants as possible in a one square foot section. A typical square-foot garden area is 4 feet across. Doing this reduces the wasted space of having the walkways around each 1-2 foot wide row. With a 4 foot wide row you can also easily reach across 2 feet on either side attend your garden area. With a good companion planting guide and seed spacing chart, you’ll be happy with the yield increase your garden enjoys this year.
Tip 2: Weed Regularly
Although square foot gardening helps reduce the need to weed until the plants grow and start to mature you’ll need to keep the weeds at bay yourself. Weeding every other day will prevent weeds from taking over and choking out your seeds. On top of possibly choking out your seeds, weeds also suck valuable nutrients and water the plants would otherwise use. Also, if you leave the weeds long enough for them to develop a root system, when you do pull them out they will likely take your plants and seeds with. So get them early to avoid those costly problems.
Tip 3: Compost and Mulch
Maximizing the use of your planting space means maximum depletion of the soil’s nutrients. This means you need to help ensure the soil remains adequate to grow your vegetables. To do this apply ample amounts of compost or compost tea to replenish those lost nutrients. Your compost should have plenty of organic matter, like lawn clippings, vegetable leaves and stalks, and manure.
Mulching around your plants helps reduce the amount of water used to feed your garden. This is because the mulch prevents the moisture from evaporating from the dirt below. Be sure you keep the mulch from touching your plant’s stems directly.
Tip 4: Harvest Early
Harvesting early is twofold – time of day and relation to the size of the fruit. You want to, according to Mother Earth News, harvest in the early morning when vegetables are at their peak nutrients and moisture level. If the fruit/vegetable you’re growing continues to grow fruit after the initial harvest, then picking them when they’re ripe, but not quite as big as they possibly could be, will keep the plant in reproduction mode longer. This will produce more food for you to harvest.
Tip 5: Succession Planting
I stated in my previous blog most of my seeds take between 50 to 85 days to harvest. With the growing season in my area being 179 days that means I can do two or three harvests from the same type of seeds if done correctly. Stagger your planting, then replant once harvested. This will increase your yield and give you a constant flow of food all season long. Make sure to add compost each time, after you harvest something, before you replant, working it into the soil a few inches.
Tip 6: Grow Up
If you aren’t limited in your growing space or if you just want to grow more, grow vining plants on a trellis. Peas, cucumbers, squash, pumpkins, and melons – just to name a few – can be grown on a sturdy trellis! On plants with bigger fruit, the vines grow thicker so they can support the weight of the fruit. Growing on trellises not only saves ground space it also reduces the risk of diseases these plants are normally susceptible to. Increased airflow around the plant and fruit is amazing.
Tip 7: Raised Garden Beds
This is the most expensive of the seven tips, but, it is worth every penny! Using my design of raised beds is cheaper than the other designs I’ve seen and is also incredibly sturdy. With the raised beds the soil isn’t compacted by walking on it. This means the vegetable roots are able to reach further down easier, gaining access to water and nutrients not normally possible. You can easily grow four times as many vegetables with the raised bed!.
Try these seven tips to improve your garden yield this year. You won’t be disappointed.
Tune in next week to read about whether to prune, or not to prune, your vegetable plants.
Until next time…. Handyman on the job!