The spring season is under-way; here are a few tasks you can do to give your vegetable seedlings a head start this growing season. Follow these four tips, and you’ll likely enjoy a bountiful harvest this year:
Raise your vegetable garden bed
Vegetable seedlings need sun and warm soil to thrive, but the soil warms up slowly in the spring. So, lift your veggies into a bed built of wood, stone or galvanised steel. With a raised vegetable garden bed, the soil warms faster and it dries quicker, too, which is a great help if you’re an area with lots of moisture.
Pre-warm your garden bed before sowing
As mentioned, warmer soil gives your seedlings a faster start. So, make sure you pre-warm your garden bed before planting. Here’s an easy way to do that: cover the bed with a layer of clear plastic for about a week. This hack can warm a sunny garden bed, increasing its soil temperature to around 10 degrees.
Mulch early to prevent weeds from sprouting
This technique will not only help make your seeds sprout faster, but will also foster an early growth of weeds. So, skim off that first layer of weeds, but remember to cover that area with mulch to prevent more weeds from sprouting. The good thing about this hack is the mulch will also start feeding the plot, preparing it very well for the vegetable seedlings you’ll plant.
Start planting with fresh, quality seed
If you plan to use stored seeds, always note the year the seeds were stored. Remember, many vegetable seeds only last a couple of years. So even if you’ve prepared your seedlings the right way, there’s a chance that they won’t grow as fast or as much as expected. When in doubt, it is best to start planting with fresh, quality seeds, as they germinate more consistently. In turn, they’ll give you the most return for all the gardening efforts.
Spring is sowing and growing season, so make the most of it by following the tips mentioned above.