Getting the Vegetable Garden Started Outdoors

March 15, 2021

By Rick Bogusch, Kathleen Kennedy

Bridge Gardens

Vegetable Garden with Rick series

The Trust is offering a series of monthly videos to share tips and techniques on growing vegetables for the home gardener. This is our second video in our Vegetable Garden with Rick series, featuring Rick Bogusch, Garden Director at Bridge Gardens.

You can watch our previous video, “Starting Vegetable Seeds at Home” and on April 15th, “Compost and Soil Health” will be posted. The videos will be available monthly on the Trust’s blog at

Notes about Getting the Vegetable Garden Started, by Rick Bogusch

  • Your vegetable garden should be placed in your yard where you get a minimum of 6 hours of full sun, preferably 8-10 hours. If the area you’ve selected gets less than 6 hours of full sun daily, you will do best with salad greens.
  • Be mindful of the location of your water source. Make sure it is reachable with a hose or irrigation to ensure that it will receive adequate water.
  • Amend the soil in your vegetable garden to give your plants nutrients they’ll need to produce well. Green sand, bone meal, kelp and organic fertilizers are all recommended and should be applied based on the information on the package you purchase.
  • If possible, don’t till the soil with a machine. It’s best to turn it by hand and you can use a digging fork or shovel. Many gardeners are anti-till and believe that it ruins the soil structure.
  • If you are interested in creating a raised bed, you don’t necessarily need a wooden box. Create a wide mound of soil with a gentle slope down to ground level and plant. However, if you desire the neat edge of a raised bed, be sure not to use treated lumber.
  • Planning the location of your vegetables in the garden is important. Tomatoes, eggplants and peppers are in the nightshade family and need to be moved to a different location each year. This prevents a buildup of insect populations like cutworms and squash bugs, as well as bacterial, fungal, and virus issues that will affect your vegetables.

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