I have always believed that a thriving & productive vegetable garden really starts during the previous fall when we put our gardens to bed. That includes cleaning all of the waste in your garden and being sure to pick up and or rake out any residual spoiled vegetables that are laying on the ground. Especially tomatoes…because tomato blights from rotten tomatoes left in the garden will winter over and infect your new plantings for the upcoming season.
I start in the spring with an actual garden plan so I know what is going into my garden and where. I also keep my plans from year to year so I can rotate my crops in the garden…this is important.
By rotating your crops you have a better chance of protecting them from blights and diseases that tend to winter over from year to year. Also after the soil has warmed up be sure to start mulching your vegetable beds with grass clippings, shredded leaves or compost. The thicker the better. It will help keep the moisture content uniform in your soil and keep your vegetables from stressing out. Also be sure to keep your weeds down throughout the growing season because most veggies don’t like competition while growing.
Lastly…select hybrid plants when possible. The hybrids vegetable plants that we grow at Winterberry are bred to be more vibrant, more vigorous, more productive and more disease resistant than standard varieties. So keep your garden clean, mulched, watered and well fed. If you do your garden will keep you well fed as well!