Episode 71 - Planning Your Spring Garden

Planning Your Spring Garden

If you're new to homesteading, and maybe gardening too, but eager to get a jump on your spring garden, let me try to help.

For me, winter is the perfect time to plan and prepare, sitting in from on the fire, glass of something in hand, ensuring my garden is full of wonderful crops come spring. What can we do while it's still too cold to grow outside?

Assess Your Space

First things first, let’s take a good look at your available garden space.

- Evaluate Available Space: Grab a tape measure and figure out the size of your garden area. This will help you decide how much you can realistically plant.

- Type of beds: Do you have raised beds or ground level? Or are you growing in pots
- Sunlight and Soil: Identify the sunniest spots in your garden. Most veggies need at least 6-8 hours of sunlight. Also, check your soil quality. Is it sandy, clay, or loamy? This will affect what you can grow and how you need to amend your soil.


Determine Your Needs

Next, think about what your family loves to eat and how much you’ll need.

- Family Preferences: Make a list of your family's favourite fruits and veggies. Involving the kids in this process can be fun and educational!
- Quantity: Estimate how much of each crop you’ll need. Think about your family size and how often you eat each type of produce.

- Use apps to help: I have just started using seedtime as a tool to help me plan what to grow when and how much.


Choose Your Crops

Now comes the fun part—choosing what to grow!

- Seasonal Suitability: Select crops that thrive in your climate. Look for varieties that are well-suited to your region's growing conditions.
- Variety Selection: Pick a mix of fast-growing and longer-maturing plants. This way, you’ll have a steady harvest throughout the season.

- Something new: Don't be afraid to try something new. If your family hates it you can always feed it to your chickens.

Plan Your Layout

Planning your garden layout is crucial for a productive and healthy garden.

- Companion Planting: Group plants that grow well together and help deter pests. For example, basil and tomatoes are great companions.
- Succession Planting: Plan to plant multiple crops in the same space throughout the season. After harvesting early crops like radishes, you can plant another round of veggies in the same spot. The seedtime program can help with this!

Create a Planting Schedule

Timing is everything when it comes to gardening.

- Frost Dates: Find out the last frost date in your area. This will help you decide when to start planting.
- Seed Starting: For crops that need a longer growing season, start seeds indoors in late winter. This gives your plants a head start before transplanting them outside.

Gather Supplies

Let’s make sure you have everything you need before the planting season begins.

- Seeds and Seedlings: Order your seeds early. Focus on heirloom and organic varieties for the best flavour and sustainability.
- Tools and Materials: Ensure you have essential gardening tools like a spade, hoe, and watering can. Don’t forget soil amendments and fertilizers to keep your plants healthy.


Mojo Homestead has a range of gardening products available for sale at our online store

Not The Farmers Wife


Prepare the Soil

Good soil is the foundation of a thriving garden.

- Soil Testing: Test your soil for pH and nutrient levels. You can buy a simple test kit online or from a garden centre.
- Amendments: Add compost and organic matter to enrich the soil. This improves soil structure and fertility, giving your plants the best start.


Set Up Irrigation

An efficient watering system can save you time and ensure your plants get the moisture they need.

- Watering System: Consider setting up a drip irrigation system or soaker hoses. These methods conserve water and deliver it directly to the plant roots.