When I was growing up, my mother had an enormous garden in the back yard – I remember tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers pouring out of it, and I only vaguely remember the work that went into it. Moving to Michigan and having space for a garden motivated me to give it a shot last year, and overall, it was pretty successful although I really did it blindly.
Over the winter I had time to read some gardening books and magazines (love Organic Gardening) and do some internet research. There are all sorts of fantastic resources out there for beginning gardeners, of which I list just a few:
Want to know whether something will grow in your zone? Check out EZGarden.com, an online vegetable garden planner which utilizes weather data specific to your zip code in order to determine if a variety is suitable to your garden plan.
Know what you can and want to grow in your area, but wondering when to start your seeds? Visit Organic Gardening online and check out their seed starting chart.
Getting ready to move your plants and/or start your seeds outside? Visit the Gardener’s Supply Company Kitchen Garden Planner.
The resources on the internet are endless, and I’m sure that as usual, some are better than others, but we all have to start somewhere….
This year, I’m planning on doubling my raised bed square footage (to 36 sq. ft.) and adding a bunch of new vegetables, both Asian and more traditional: cucumbers, tomatoes, herbs, okra, broccoli (Chinese and western), eggplants, beets, delicata squash, green beans and zucchini (both bush varieties, with which I am not familiar?), spinach, okame, komatsuna, mesclun, arugula, carrots, and bok choy. Look for updates as things develop (or don’t)!