How to Plant Your Vegetable Garden Earlier

How to Plant Your Vegetable Garden Earlier

How to Plant Your Vegetable Garden Earlier 974 547 Eco Garden Systems

The Beginner Gardener: Plant Your Vegetable Garden Earlier with an Eco Garden

In the Garden with Jessica

Planting the vegetable garden is right around the corner. I’m ready to replenish my less-than-stellar soil from last year, but snow has impeded my plans. A big lesson I’m learning so far: planning the garden is a good idea, but Mother Nature will not actually let you set it in stone. If you’re like me you want to plant your vegetable garden earlier this year too.

Hopefully I can get to the soil next weekend and then I’ll get my cooler crops into the garden by the end of April. Here’s what’s going in first, all straight from seed:

  • Kale
  • Kohlrabi
  • Peas
  • Radish
  • Beets
  • Cilantro
  • Hyssop

In early May, I will plant broccoli and lettuce, which I started from seed indoors, and carrots, which I will direct seed. The rest of my seeds will go in after Mother’s Day, just to be safe—we had snow here in the Twin Cities in early May last year.

Even with the slightly cooler temperatures, I should be able to work my soil and plant because I’m using an elevated Eco Garden Systems Original Garden, which you should consider if you want to plant your vegetable garden earlier. This garden allows you to plant earlier (by up to two weeks!) because it sustains both moisture and warmer temperatures. The combination of food-grade plastic (heat capture), water reservoir and enclosed soil helps maintain a consistent temperature, leading to much faster germinations rates. Here’s three main components that create this perfect vegetable growing formula:

Water Reservoir + Soil Platform + Air Gap Technology = up to 50% speed to maturity (look for our initial results from our project with Concordia University in St. Paul – coming soon!!).

early planting vegetable garden
planting a vegetable garden

These three components create more access to oxygen and more moisture retention. The water reservoir holds 74 gallons and allows you to use 65% less water than traditional gardens. The Air Gap sits between the soil platform (which contains small holes) and the water reservoir, creating hyperoxygenation. The taproot (dominant, large root from which smaller roots sprout) from your plants will grow down to the water reservoir, causing less competition for nutrients between plants. Check out the University of Minnesota research on how this creates increased plant production.

Now what will I do if frost comes knocking (or the horrors of more snow)? I’ll use a fitted bedsheet since the plants will be small enough—it fits perfectly over the 4’ x 6’ Eco Garden elevated bed. You can also use row covers when the plants get larger. If you have just a few emerging plants that need protection, try this garden hack:

Overall, it’s best to start planting when day time temperatures are consistently at 50 degrees. Make sure you verify your gardening zone and your projected last frost dates as they can change year-to-year. Also, do your research to make sure you know the ideal temperature to plant each type of vegetable. Now I’m off to stare at my indoor seedlings for the hundredth time today; can’t wait to garden!

Tell us: When do you start spring planting? What are you growing first?

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