Want to commit to a healthier organic lifestyle? Why not grow a raised small garden table at home? We saw, too, that we no longer needed to buy or hire a plow, or drag a cultivator, a tiller. To dig in raised garden beds, we needed only a few tools: a fork, a rake, a shovel, dirt, wood, mesh and a hand trowel – all inexpensive. Much to our surprise and excitement, the beds of composted clay soil that we prepared and planted last spring soon produced an abundance of healthy and delicious vegetables.
Here are some considerations you should think about first before making the “deep dig” into building your home garden.
- Consider getting healthy plants from your local garden greenhouse or organic farmers. I typically visit all the local garden stores in the area. I am a big fan of farm to table food. I interview the head gardener to figure out exactly where the farms are located. If the plants are grown too far away in another state, the certainty of its organic status is weaker. If the plants are grown within a 50-mile radius, you know that maybe the seller keeps his transportation costs low and values local produce. Consider asking, “Are these plants grown in greenhouse?” “Do you offer any organic certification on the plants?” It’s always good to ask a lot of questions.
- Decide if you want a raised garden. The one thing that I love most about my personal garden is that is raised for easy accessibility. No intense back bends are required to prune or water the plants. My petite garden is about 30 inches high, 4 feet deep and about 8 feet long. Also, it’s more difficult for animals to gain access to your green garden goodies.
- Make the table size manageable for your and your family. If you decide to build a garden, just get 2×4 wood pieces and hammer away. Make sure to buy steel or clean metal net for the base of the garden table. Most rectangular herb gardens are about 2×4 feet in dimensions. If needed, you can buy a garden mesh material to lay on top of the metal net for added moisture retention. Think about your lifestyle. If you live in an apartment, it will be so much more convenient to have a table garden as most apartment complexes do not have an outdoor yard. LA DUH!
- Install some kind of DIY water irrigation system. Are you Type-A person who manages your day down to the minute? If yes, you can go ahead and water your plants daily and skip to number #5. If no, like most of the world’s citizens, we’ve got a solution you can install on your own or hire a plumber. AHH! Buying an timer based system to water your plants will be one the best decisions you’ve ever made. The one that I like the most for garden newbies –who want to take their garden game to the next level– is the Rain Bird. I’ve got this one in my raised garden too. You will likely buy the water heads and the hose system together. This small system can also be purchased from Home Depot. Get out there. Besides, if you are single, it’s a great place to meet men too. Ask the Home Depot attendant to help you or if you are an online shopper, use this link to buy the irrigation system from Amazon.
- Create an attractive critter-proof barrier. I use marigold flowers along the perimeter of my flower bed to prevent leaf eating critters. Second, I periodically spray the leaves with vinegar water. Third, I’ve heard from my yogi friends that lemongrass is an effective way to prevent certain bugs as well. Try adding lemongrass oil to your natural vinegar spray and let nature work its miracles. In summary, when you combine the height of your small garden with natural repellent spray, you’ve got a winning garden strategy. It’s gardening made simple!