Once your vegetable garden is planted and begins to produce a crop, you can spend a few moments every day in the garden to monitor when vegetables are ripe and to harvest them. This is one of the joys of growing vegetables. Generally speaking, picking early and often is the best way to get the…

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Even with a short Minnesota growing season, you can extend the productivity of your vegetable garden by replanting certain vegetables a second or even a third time. It all depends on timing—as well as a little luck with the weather breaking your way. At the beginning of the season, you can get early crops like…

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The two biggest issues for vegetable gardeners in the North are deer and rabbits. Both are relentless and clever, if they are hungry enough. Fencing can work to control both types of pests, though installing effective fencing requires some effort and expense. Other pesky mammals and rodents — voles, moles, mice and gophers, for example…

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Before we even start talking about pests, let’s be clear: Most bugs are good bugs, and trying to keep your vegetable garden bug-free is not only an exercise in futility, it’s not good for the food you are going to eat or the planet. One way to keep destructive pests at bay is to plant…

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Once your vegetable garden is planted, you’ll have just a few ongoing chores: watering, picking and weeding. None of these need be onerous (and, of course, picking vegetables is just a joy!) but weeding is sometimes viewed as a huge task. It’s not — and there are ways you can reduce your time spent weeding…

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Vegetables are living, growing things, and they need to be fed. The amount of nitrogen, phosophorous, potassium and trace minerals that plants need varies. (See below for list of heavy feeders.) But generally speaking, if you feed the soil, you feed your vegetables. If you do not feed your sol by adding compost or other…

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Now that you’ve got your tomato planted, there are other things to keep in mind, like how to minimize its upkeep. One way is by spreading mulch, such as a layer of compost, straw, or grass clippings, around—but not quite up to—the base of the plant. Mulch functions as a weed barrier, and helps to…

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I heard it a lot when I talked to gardeners last summer, and the summer before that: “My tomatoes are doing terrible—I don’t know what I did wrong!” People are understandably disappointed when the plants they’ve carefully tended and nurtured fail to produce the bountiful crop they dreamed about all winter, and they assume that…

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Growing greens — lettuce, spinach, arugula and other leafy things — in your vegetable garden produces big pay-offs in taste and nutrition for relatively little effort. And, nothing says summer has arrived quite like a trip to the garden to cut lettuce for a salad. As with any vegetable garden, the first rule is to…

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In most urban vegetable gardens, plant spacing is determined by what sort of things you plan to grow and how many plants of each variety you plan to put in. Conventional gardening wisdom advises that vegetable plants need ample space around them for air to circulate, and also to avoid crowded roots, and that’s true…

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