A revolutionary concept, “rectangular foot gardening” allows you to develop more vegetables in less area, the use of fewer assets.
The idea originated with Mel Bartholomew and is certain in his books Square Foot Gardening and All New Square Foot Gardening, in addition to in several online sources.
Mr. Bartholomew started out considering new ideas for gardening after figuring out the inefficiency of conventional gardens that grow unmarried rows of vegetables. This layout stems from area farming, with lengthy rows assisting big volumes of vegetation and wide, unplanted aisles between rows.
The lengthy rows typically grow greater produce than a domestic gardener desires, and we usually plant a whole seed packet, best to tug up most of the seedlings to thin flora. The exercise of planting in rows is inefficient, and SFG makes more experience for the home garden.
An additional hassle with traditional row gardens is that the 2- to three-foot aisles among the rows waste space. It’s now not getting used for developing veggies, yet it is able to be rototilled, fertilized and watered with the relaxation of the garden. As a result, it’s going to also want to be weeded, an tremendous waste of strength for the garden area that isn’t effective. SFG gets rid of those problems.
So what is SFG? It is the practice of organizing raised rectangular or square beds that are handiest huge sufficient in your palms to attain into. Each mattress is divided into square foot planting areas so that a four-through-4-foot garden might incorporate a 16-square-foot planting area. A three-by means of-6-foot rectangular garden would comprise 18 square toes, and so on. Remember, the dimensions of the lawn are most effective restricted by way of how far you may attain into it for protection and there are not any aisles for on foot among plant life.
Mr. Bartholomew determined that a rectangular foot growing vicinity ought to be deliberate with the ideal wide variety of vegetation approved to permit for adequate spacing. For example, one square foot will accommodate nine flora requiring four-inch spacing, such as spinach. With vegetation desiring 6-inch spacing, 4 may be planted in a square foot, and sixteen flora can grow if they need to be 3 inches apart.
This green technique of organizing growing areas makes it less complicated to control the quantity of yield, and you are working in smaller regions which might be producing a most harvest.
How do you begin? First, pick out a place to your garden close to your home that makes it handy to go out and tend for your plantings. Because SFGs are compact, tremendously effective and actually weed-unfastened, don’t forget incorporating them into your landscape design as you will a flowerbed.
The next step is to construct your lawn on a pinnacle of the floor in place of digging into your soil. You will construct a container the size of your lawn, together with a 4-via-four box for a 16-rectangular-foot planting area. For maximum garden vegetables, the container handiest desires to be 6 inches deep. Some very long root crops (massive carrots, leeks, potatoes) may additionally require an intensity of 12 inches, and for them, it’s far maximum green to build man or woman rectangular foot packing containers.
The packing containers can be fabricated from lumber, bricks, blocks, stone, whatever, as lengthy because it is not a material dangerous in your plants. The box ought to be bottomless with weed barrier overlaying the complete backside surface. It should be situated so that you can walk around the perimeter and can attain completely to all regions inside the box. This removes the want to step onto the developing surface which packs down the soil.
The third step is to build your soil. By creating your personal developing blend, you make certain that its miles rich in vitamins and minerals, holds moisture and drains nicely. Mr. Bartholomew recommends a mixture of identical components peat moss, vermiculite, and combined compost. Not simplest will all of those materials provide a perfect, natural bed on your plants, but by not the usage of soil out of your backyard, you have got surely eliminated the increase of weeds. Also, there may be no want for fertilizing due to the fact compost offers the nutrients required for healthy plants.
Once your garden container has been full of growing medium, lay out a grid on top of the box dividing it into square foot growing regions. The grid can be made from any sturdy material, which includes wooden lath or Venetian blinds. The grid needs to be secured to the field frame in order that the person growing areas are honestly delineated.
Finally, you’re prepared to plant. Mr. Bartholomew offers clear practice for what number of plants every square foot can preserve, inclusive of one head of cabbage, four Swiss chard, 9 beets, sixteen onions or one tomato with help according to a square foot. It is also simpler to devise for rotating seasonal plants with SFG. Overall, planting, watering, harvesting and all other renovation will be simpler due to the fact you’re working with an extra doable and efficient developing area than you’re with a conventional lawn.
Now is the time to recall converting your garden to a less difficult, greener and potentially extra aesthetic layout. SFG gives many blessings over conventional practices.