Successful Tips on Growing Vegetables on a Slope
Growing and maintaining an edible garden is a great way of growing food crops that can save us a ton of money over time. This is a great way to ensure that we are harvesting crops that are healthy, one such garden that can benefit us is growing vegetables. The traditional way of growing vegetables is from a ground that is leveled or containers but what happens when the amount of space that is available is a slope how do you go about growing and harvesting vegetables from this type of area that may offer some challenges?
While I will agree you may have some challenges the good news is with the right information you can overcome these issues and reap a good harvest of your time invested. If this post describes you then you have come to the right place to gain insights into how to take advantage of hillside areas to have success. Before we go into the actual construction of a hillside garden let’s look at some of these challenges.
- Soil erosion
- Nutrient loss
- Having access to and working from these areas
- Irrigation runoff
- Rain runoff
- Plant selection
Because the soil is on a hill it is at an angle that points in the downward position, during heavy rain downpours valuable topsoil is washed away causing plant root exposure which can dry out causing setbacks, these exposed roots can also weaken your garden plants.
Nutrient loss is another factor to consider, again as discussed earlier because of slope areas nutrients can get washed downhill and what you don’t want is to lose your investment (time, money, and plants). Plant nutrients are the building blocks of garden plant survival, therefore, it’s so important that we do all that we can to ensure that our plants don’t get robbed of these essential vitamins because plants that are healthy will give us a good harvest.
Having access to and working from these areas
Maintaining your vegetable garden on a hillside is so important to your plant’s health, maintenance practices such as weeding, watering, fertilizing, pruning, and garden insect pests control is a must. Slopes can present a challenge when working from these areas which means caution must be taken.
Hand watering with a hose may become a challenge when watering from these areas, it’s best to install an irrigation system that will make your job a lot easier is worth the investment.
Rain can make our job easier by letting nature take care of the watering for us but then again there is the challenge of water runoff where most of that valuable water is lost.
Vegetables that grow best on a hillside garden include.
Now that we have looked at these issues what can we do to counterattack overcoming these obstacles?
How To Grow Vegetables On A Hillside
A great way to counter-attack is by installing a terrace garden, these gardens are mini gardens or plant beds that are raised beds that will help in accomplishing your goals. Raise bed gardens are mini wooden boxes that are simple to construct but will get the job done. For more on raised bed garden follow the link that has been provided. The photo that is shown here gives an example of one of many types of raised bed gardens.
The one in this picture is made out of bricks but these beds can also be made from lumber that’s a whole lot cheaper. Creating a box for each vegetable group placing them side by side ensuring that the spaces between them are equal and wide enough for you to walk from row to row. The number of raised beds that is constructed depends on the size of the area that you want to use for your garden.
The first step however before installing these boxes is to start with a plan, have a look at the entire area that is to be used this will give you a better visual of laying out the entire area. Once you know what you want and the time comes for the actual work to be done ensure that you’re wearing the proper clothing along with the right footwear.
Boots that have proper gripping should be worn because you are working on a slope and what you want is to keep your footing. The area should be cleared of weeds, plant material, and other debris. The next step is to grade or level the area, followed by installing your vegetable boxes in rows equally spaced apart.
Once your raised garden boxes are installed add good garden soil that is organic-rich, bring the soil level just under a few inches from the top because what you don’t want is when your water for water to runover washing soil out of the bed and probably seeds also. Now when the time comes to sow your seed do not overcrowd the boxes but read the label planting instructions. The amount of water, fertilizer, and time of seed germination all the way to the time of harvest should be on the package.
Benefits of raised bed gardens
Below are other benefits of raised bed gardens.
- These gardens will make it difficult for slugs and snails to reach garden plants
- The soil warms up much faster in the season
- Weeds are easy to manage
- Crop rotation is easier
- More growing space
- Less soil compaction
- Extend the growing season
- Plant’s roots will establish quicker
- Better water drainage
- Less nutrient loss
- Less soil erosion
- Installing a raised bed will reduce the risk of planting in contaminated soil
Bringing garden insect pest under control
The use of pesticides labeled for food crops will bring garden insect pests under control but since you’re growing on a hillside introducing beneficial insects in this area will offer help. Beneficial insects will eliminate garden insect pests by feeding on them, there are two ways of introducing beneficial insects into your hillside garden.
2. Another way to introduce beneficial insects into your garden is by purchasing them from your garden center and releasing them once you get home. The best time to release these insects so they don’t fly away is late in the afternoon just before the sunsets.
3. Ensure not to overwater which can lead to rot and other issues.
The final word on how to grow vegetables on a hillside
Growing vegetables on a hillside are possible, all it takes is knowing how and you are all set to garden successfully as you reap a good harvest of the time invested. Many homeowners are taking advantage of this garden type and making use of that available space so don’t let that slope stop you from growing your very own homegrown vegetables. Begin to work the soil’s from that slop area and join the many homeowners who are having good success.