Thursday, April 16, 2009

Time to Plant Vegetables!

Now that soil temperatures have started to warm up, it is time to plant many heat loving warm season vegetables like butter beans, lima beans, green beans, black eye peas, cow peas, watermelons, cantaloupe, eggplants, peppers, tomatoes, and okra. Beans and southern peas are typically sown directly into the garden in long rows, with seed spaced 2" to 4" apart in the row. Watermelon and cantaloupes can be planted directly into the garden as seed or transplanted as young plants. Eggplant, peppers, tomatoes and okra are typically transplanted as young plants purchased from a garden center or started at home.

Trying to figure out how many seed or plants you need to buy can be tricky when you're standing in the garden center. Doing a little planning before hand using the following resources will help you know how much seed to buy and plant for just the right amount of fresh vegetables!

Planning Resources:

Planning a Vegetable Garden from Clemson Extension
This fact sheet provides a couple of very handy charts that tell how much seed it takes to plant a 100' row (these rates can easily be pared down for smaller vegetable gardens) for many types of vegetables, as well as how far apart to plant seed, how deep to plant them, and how long it should take to reach harvest time.

Expected Vegetable Garden Yields from Lousiana Cooperative Extension
Want to know how many ears of corn, pounds of beans, or watermelons to expect from your vegetable garden? This great resource provides yield data for a wide range of vegetables that is applicable to our area. Yields are given on a 100' row basis (example, you can expect a 120 ears of corn from 100' of corn plants).

Happy Gardening!

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