Vegetable Gardening By: Eryn Zumwalt Final Project CIS1020
Vegetable Gardening This is the perfect time of year to think about starting a home vegetable garden. Many people think taking up this hobby is a daunting task. However, it can be quite easy, and even enjoyable. Other people might think it is a waste of time, when they can just go to the store and buy the food. In this day and age, there are many reasons that growing your own food is not a waste of time. With this presentation, I hope to show that having your own vegetable garden is a smart and easy thing to do.
Reasons to start a garden Gardening can make a great hobby Global food prices are on the rise Growing your own food helps the environment Nutrition Great source of excise
Gardening for a hobby In this fast paced world, many people need a way to relax and unwind. Gardening is a perfect hobby to do so. Many people like gardening for many different reasons. It is an activity you can share with your spouse, kids, or friends. It is a great activity to get you out of the house. Plus it is a productive way to spend precious free time.
Global food prices are on the rise When food prices are measured, the FAO food price index is used. The FAO food price Index is a measure of the monthly change in international prices of a basket of food commodities. In the month of March, the Index averaged 230 points, down 2.9 percent from its peak in February. Which is the first decline in eight straight months. However it is still 37 percent above March of last year. There are many factors that will the shape the up coming months concerning of food prices. The current crops and how they are effected by the weather, events that effect oil prices in the Middle East and North Africa and the effects of the destruction in Japan. With all of these issues, the decline will probably not turn into a trend. If you grow some of your food, your pocket book wont be hurting quite as much.
Helping the environment Growing your own food helps the environment in many ways. The biggest way you can help the environment when gardening, is by having a “green” garden. A ‘green” garden, is another term for organic. There are many things you can do to achieve this. Many gardeners make their own organic fertilizer, which is most commonly referred to as compost. Compost is made out of recycled organic kitchen and yard scraps. Compost makes your plants stronger and healthier by stimulating beneficial soil organisms,. They also reduce the need for additional fertilizers and chemical pesticides. Also when you recycle this type of waste, you will reduce the amount of energy used to send the waste to the dump. Gardeners also recycle rain water to use in the garden. You can set up barrels to catch the falling rain or collect it out of your houses rain gutters. Many gardeners also set up drip irrigation systems since they are more efficient then sprinkler systems. Another was growing your own food helps the environment is by reducing the amount of fossil fuels and excess packaging used to transport food to your local stores.
Nutrition When you grow your own food, you get the freshest items possible. Everyone knows fresh food always tastes better. Also the fresher the food is, the more vitamins they contain. You can also freeze and can your harvest to enjoy the benefits all year long. The biggest benefit from growing your own food is that you don’t have to worry about your food safety. There have been many food recalls in the past few years due to food contamination. Food contamination may occur at the farm, manufacturing plant, or during the transportation process. When contaminated food is eaten, it can cause illness and even death. There is also some concern about the over use of harmful pesticides used on food. When you grow your own food, you control the type and amount of pesticides and fertilizers you use. When you use fresh ingredients in the meals you make you don’t have to worry about added additives and preservatives. Growing your own food, is health for your body and your piece of mind.
Exercise Studies claim that in general you can burn up to 300 calories for women and 400 calories for men per hour with moderately strenuous gardening activity. Gardening involves walking, stretching, lifting and bending. Gardening can build muscle as well as give a good cardio and aerobic workout. This kind of exercise can help lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels. It can also help keep away problems with heart disease, diabetes and other diseases related to inactivity and excess weight.
Supplies BasicSupply Pricing ItemPriceQuantity Gloves$1.971 Trowel$3.971 Spade$3.971 Shovel$5.981 Hand Cultivator$3.971 Garden Hose$6.981 Seeds$0.985 tomato cage$2.781 Fertilizer$4.471 Pest control$5.971 Total:$44.96 When you decide to start a garden, you need a few basic supplies to get started. You may already have some of these supplies at home. The worksheet to the right, has an average summary of supplies and prices. Depending on your garden, you may need a more complex list of supplies. Some of these items may include: Fencing, kneeling pads, planting containers, or starter plants.
Steps to set up a garden Choose your location. There are many options: flower beds, raised beds, containers,etc. Choose your plants. Choose locally adapted varieties. Not all vegetable varieties grow well in all areas. You can choose between seeds or young starter plants Plant at the right time of year. In some areas planting windows are very narrow and you must hit them fairly precisely for a bountiful harvest. In other areas, you can plant several times over the summer and maintain a longer harvest season. Prepare the soil properly before planting. Work in generous amounts of compost or manure. If you don’t use compost or manure, which already contains nitrogen, also work in a complete fertilizer. Plan a layout so you can plant properly. Plant at the proper depth and space, following the directions on seed packets/starter plants. Vegetables planted too closely together will produce poorly. If you’re planting starters, don’t let them set too deeply or the stems may rot. Water everything thoroughly. For seeds, keep areas moist until they germinate and start growing. With already started plants, after the first watering, you can start allowing them to dry out a bit between watering.
What to plant in your garden VegetablePlanting dates Day to maturity Planting depth(seed) Space in between plants AsparagusMar 1-May 12 Years6-8 Inches1 ½-2 Feet Bean: BushMar 1-Jul 165-90 Days1-2 Inches1-1 ½ Inches Bean: LimaMar 1-May 190-100 Days1-2 Inches1-1 ½ Inches BroccoliMar 1-Jul 155-75 Days¼-1/2 Inches14 to 18 Inches CauliflowerMar 1- Jul 160-95 Days¼-1/2 inches12 to 18 inches CornApr 1-Jun 165-95 Days1-2 Inches2 Inches EggplantMar 1-Jun 160-80 Days¼-1/2 Inches2 ½ -3 Feet KaleMar 1-May 150-60 Days¼-1/2 Inches10 Inches OnionMar 1-May 190-120 Days1-2 Inches3-4 Inches PeasMar 1-May 150-70 Days1-2 Inches1 Inches TomatoApr 1-Jun 1560-90 Days¼ -1/2 Inches 1-2 Inches In Utah gardeners have good luck with asparagus, beans, broccoli, cauliflower, corn, eggplant, kale, onion, peas, and tomatoes. Herbs also grow well there. The planting dates are always, tentative since weather in Utah is never stable in the springtime.
Maintaining the Garden -Water consistently. Maintain even soil moisture so plants do not dry out, but don’t over-water. Inconsistent watering will reduce yields in most vegetables, and make others taste bitter. Installing a drip irrigation system connected to an automatic timer is your best bet. - Fertilize regularly. Maintaining vigorous growth is very important with almost all vegetables. Most should be fed with a nitrogen fertilizer at least every 4 to 6 weeks. However, be careful not to over-fertilize, which can cause some vegetables to produce less. - Mulch. A 2- to 3-inch layer of compost applied over the roots of your vegetable plants will cool the soil, reduce weeds, and help prevent soil moisture fluctuations that ruin quality. - Eliminate weeds. Weeds compete with vegetables for water, nutrients and sunlight. This can reduce yields. Pull weeds by hand and cultivate the soil frequently to keep them to a minimum. -Harvest often. Many vegetables will stop producing if not harvested frequently. -Control insects. Always keep an eye open for insect damage, and protect your plants with a product labeled for use on vegetables.
Conclusion Vegetable gardening can bring many benefits into your life. Besides being a great hobby, it can help you be more environmentally conscience, and makes it easier to eat healthier. I hope with this presentation, I have debunked many of the misconceptions that are out there about vegetable gardening.
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