How often do you find yourself running to the grocery store for fresh vegetables – once every two days? Why not save yourself time, energy and money by growing your own vegetables? From balcony planters to urban rooftop gardening, everyone's finding a way to go organic and get their hands in some earthy goodness. Stodels has given us a very easy way to start growing our own vegetables. All it requires is a little bit of hands-on garden work and some knowledge on what you want to grow. With this handy guide, you'll soon be well on your way to shopping in your own garden.
What you need to start the Veggie box
- A wooden slatted box on legs
- Weed guard
- LECA – for drainage
- Potting soil and Superflora Mix
- Bone meal and Superphosphate
- Hand trowel and fork
- Vegetable and other selected seedlings
- Snapshot specialty herbicide – for weed control
- Rooibos mulch
- Margaret Roberts organic insecticide
- Seagro and Trelimix
- Sprayer bottle and hand gloves
First, line your box with weed guard. It will prevent the soil from falling through, but will still allow drainage. Staple the material to the edges of the box right up to the edge and then trim off.
Add a 5cm layer of LECA (a clay-like substance) for drainage.
The mixture consists of potting soil and Superflora Mix – fill the box three quarters full with potting soil, then add Superflora. For every two bags of 30dm potting soil, you add ten litres of Superflora Mix (two to one). Mix it thoroughly with the potting soil while at the same time loosening up the soil for drainage.
Add 60g of Superphosphate and 60g of bone meal – about a handful. Superphosphate is fast acting and helps root development while bone meal will work in the long term.
Add Snapshot to stop weed growth. Sprinkle it lightly over the soil and mix it in before planting your veggies.
How to plant
Dig a hole the size and depth of the plant. Remember when you take your seedling out of the tray, loosen up the roots as their growth has been stifled in the container. Cover the seedling with soil, pressing lightly around it. You need to space your veggies about 25cm apart so they have room to grow.
Keeping insects away naturally
Plant Marigolds in between – not only are they pretty but they keep insects away!
Use Rooibos mulch – the mulching prevents evaporation and the Rooibos will prevent snails from eating your precious plants.
To prevent Aphids, use Margaret Roberts organic insecticide - read the instructions carefully.
Feed your plants with Seagro. Use one cap in every two litres of water every two weeks to encourage healthy leaf growth. You can also use 25ml of Trelimix in 2 litres of water every week to encourage growth.
Thinning and spacing
The seedlings can be thinned out or transplanted when they start to spread themselves. Vegetables need space to develop and they do not like competing for moisture, food and light. With good air circulation there is less chance of disease as well. Beetroot in particular, will not develop thickened roots if they are not thinned out.
This post was sponsored by Stodels Nurseries