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Question

Roger Doiron
How do I decide where to put my vegetable garden?
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Answer

To find a great site, start by looking for a site that receives full sun, ideally at least 8 hours a day. Also take the following into account: Well-drained soil. The site should drain well after a rain, since wet soil is difficult to work, most vegetables don't like wet feet, and wet soil also is very late to warm up in spring. Plan on installing raised beds if your site doesn't drain well. Easy water access. Carrying water is no fun. You'll want a site that you can reach with a hose. Level is best. Look for a site that's fairly level. Plan on terracing if you don't have a level site. Keep it close. While you probably want a garden that's not smack-dab in the center of everything, you also may not want one that's out on the back forty. A spot you routinely pass daily makes it easy to pull a weed or two, check to see if plants need watering, or pick a few ripe tomatoes. Out of harm's way. Locate your garden out of the center of the yard and away from play areas and walkways, so it doesn't have to compete with softball games, barbecues, and foot traffic to other parts of the yard. Consider underground problems. Consider the location of underground wires or cables as well as plumbing and septic systems. Also, stay away from sites where tree roots will compete with your vegetables. Consider fencing potential. If deer and other pests are active in your neighborhood, choose a site that you can fence. Plant protection. Select a site protected from prevailing winds, or plan to create some kind of windbreak. Reprinted from The Veggie Gardener's Answer Book Copyright 2008 by Barbara W. Ellis, with permission from Storey Publishing.

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