Go to content Go to menu

Tips on Starting a Vegetable Garden

Using Seeds or Plants

Decide whether you want to grow from seed or from young plants. If using seeds, you'll need to start them indoors a couple of months in advance. Young plants go directly into the ground immediately after the last frost.


Start a compost pile. Recycling organic matter such as eggshells, coffee grounds and orange rinds will nourish your garden. Whether you start a simple compost mound or buy a compost bin, get your compost pile going at least six months to a year in advance so the organic matter breaks down. When it's time to till your garden to loosen the dirt for planting, mix compost with the soil.

Find a Sunny Spot

Find a spot for your vegetable garden that takes advantage of as much of the day's sun as possible. Avoid shady or partially shady spots, because vegetables won't grow well in these areas.

Consider Raised Beds

Raised garden beds help to drain water away from roots. You can create your own raised beds with boards or purchase kits. If you have clay or other soil with poor drainage, a raised bed 8 to 9 inches deep will help to prevent root rot and mold.