Tuesday, March 23, 2021

Planning a 4 Season Vegetable Garden , 99 Cent Vegetable Gardening eBook

Quick Tips on Vegetable Gardening 
by J.Q. Rose and Gardener Ted
99 cents!!
Click here to download your copy.

Hello and welcome to the Focused on Story Blog!

Planning a 4 Season Vegetable Garden 

by J.Q. Rose

My husband's love of gardening is the reason we set our dreams on growing plants in a greenhouse. That dream grew from a simple plan to build a hobby greenhouse against the back of our garage. When the neighbors wanted to buy some of Ted's plants for their yard, he began growing not only plants for our flower beds and vegetable garden but also extra plants to sell. His hobby blossomed into a dream to own and operate a greenhouse operation. In 1965, we stepped into our dream, searching for and purchasing a greenhouse operation and a flower shop in Michigan.

I tell our story about the first year in the flower business in my newly released memoir, Arranging a Dream.
In 1975 we moved to Fremont, Michigan to become entrepreneurs. This is our flower shop and greenhouse operation, top right, and our 1-year-old daughter, Sara, bottom right.

My farm boy husband, Ted, is still in love with gardening. We are retired from the greenhouse business, but Ted is living his life-long desire to garden 12 months out of the year. He has a garden up north in the spring, summer and fall and a garden in Florida during the winter. 

This time of year Ted begins planning his large garden up north. Are you planning your garden whether just in your head, on paper or on the computer with a garden planning program? He is devouring the gorgeous photos in the seed catalogs and making lists of plants to try in the spring garden. I imagine a lot of you can identify with that planning and dreaming process.

Here are a few tips from Gardener Ted for planning a garden this spring. Enjoy those delicious veggies!

1. Determine the size and location, preferably with 6-8 hours of sun a day with water nearby for watering the plants. Buying too many seeds or plants for the space you have available is easy to do, but knowing the space you have to work in helps you face the reality of the actual square feet you have to use.
Gardener Ted watering his spring garden

2. Decide which way to plant the rows in your garden.

3. Remember to save room for a path or paths through the garden so you can easily water, fertilize, weed, etc.

4. Select areas for planting for the seasons. It is best to plant those veggies you will harvest in spring in a group. For example, plant lettuce, peas, green onions, radishes together for spring harvesting. In another section plant beans, cucumbers, eggplant, peppers, squash, and tomatoes for summer harvest, and broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, spinach, lettuce or cool weather crops for fall gathering.

5. To efficiently use the garden area, it is possible to "double-crop" the section. When the spring plants are depleted, re-plant the section with another group of plants for late summer or fall harvest time. See how grouping the seasonal plants together allows this extra perk?

6. Another advantage of planting with the season of harvest in mind helps you clear out a section to re-plant or to clean up for the winter. So instead of planting the cole crops like cabbage and broccoli which like the cold weather on the opposite ends of the garden, plant them together with the fall harvest crops like pumpkins and winter squash.

7. You may live in an area where it is possible to keep root crops such as parsnips and turnips in the ground longer for a winter crop. Be sure to keep these vegetables planted in the same section so you can clean up and prepare the rest of the garden for winter.

Think first about the harvest times for your vegetables and group them accordingly in your garden. With some pre-planning, you can eat fresh all year.


Arranging a Dream: a Memoir by J.Q. Rose
In 1975, Ted and Janet with their one-year-old baby girl move all their earthly belongings to Michigan to make their dream of owning a greenhouse operation come true. Through tears and laughter they cultivate their loving marriage, juggle parenting and dig deep to root a thriving floral and greenhouse business.

Click here to discover more books by JQ Rose at the BWL Publishing JQRose Author's Page


"If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need."--Marcus Tullius Cicero
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Helena Fairfax said...

Hi JQ (and GT!) Thanks for all those great tips. I especially like the one about not falling into the trap of getting too many seeds. I think it's a bit too late to tell Nigel that one! We already have a few thinks shooting up in the potting shed. He's seriously thinking of making a few beds on top of the shed, so he can accommodate everything :D
Hope spring is good where you are!

J.Q. Rose said...

Hi Helena, I should probably admit that Ted has a few hundred or more seeds too many too! Your photo of the park this morning on Facebook was so pretty and springy. Glad Nigel is geeked up about the garden--and on top of the shed?? I want a picture of that. Happy Spring to you.

Marsha said...

Hey, JQ. Great post. I'm not really into gardening except for potted plants outside and my African Violets inside (which sadly I now have to replace because they froze. I've shared. :)

J.Q. Rose said...

Thanks, Marsha. I must admit, Ted is the gardener. I don't do much else other than snap beans and cook the veggies. !!

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