What do you plan on growing? Fruits? Vegetables? Herbs? Flowers? A little of everything? Write it down on a list.
Now take a second look at your selection. Are the fruits and vegetables that you have listed things you eat frequently? If you don’t ordinarily go to the store and buy rutabagas just because you like the taste of rutabagas, you probably don’t need to plant them, either. You’ll have enough work to do in your garden without tending plants you aren’t partial to.
This is not to say that you should never experiment—sometimes that is how you’ll find your favorite vegetables. But until you know it’s a keeper, don’t buy a lot of seeds, and only set aside a small place for it in the garden.
Which varieties of each plant to try is a harder question. The answer will largely depend on what you are trying to accomplish:
- If you want to save seeds, consider an heirloom variety.
- If you will sell certified organic produce, organic seeds are a must.
- If your goal is great taste, go with a best-selling favorite.
- If you are raising perennial fruits or vegetables, make sure they are adapted to your climate. (This applies to annual produce, as well, but to a much lesser extent.)
Keep a notebook listing your favorite varieties. With time, you will discover what grows well in your garden and tastes great on your table.
So are you finally ready to get your hands dirty? Happy gardening!
Top 10 Plants for Beginning Kitchen Gardners
Our own recommendations on what to grow your first year.
Recommended Vegetable Varieties
A list of suggestions from K-State.