If you are looking for a great way to make the most of your gardening space, increase your garden yield, and make gardening easier than ever you may want to consider square foot gardening. This gardening method is great for allowing those with limited space to grow a thriving garden that can help provide your family with food, medicine, and other great benefits.
What is square foot gardening?
The popularity of square foot gardening is growing because it is a simple and effective gardening method. In this method, plants are typically planted in squares measuring 12 inches by 12 inches, often placing multiple plants in each square. This is usually done in raised beds, but square foot gardening can be done anywhere.
This gardening method originated from the effort to make growing food in urban areas easier and more accessible to all. Compared with traditional row gardens and garden beds that use regular spacing, square foot gardening allows you to plant more in a smaller area. Using these methods, your garden will usually have large open spaces, while square foot gardening allows you to make the most of every inch.
The benefits of square foot gardening?
For beginners, a square foot garden is a great gardening method because it has many great benefits that help make gardening easier. This method is great for gardening whether you are new or experienced.
Square foot gardening is great for small gardens. You don’t need a large garden space to start square foot gardening, and you can even start in a small garden bed on a patio if you are short on space.
When using the square foot gardening method, you can plant more food in a small space. This method makes use of every inch of space possible. You can get a larger crop from your gardening space if you have a square foot garden since more food can be grown in a limited area.
Square foot gardening allows you to plant a large variety of plants in your garden beds. As with other types of companion planting, a square foot garden is great for creating biodiversity in your garden that helps keep disease and pests away.
As a result of the setup of square foot gardens, you can reach the entire garden bed from one of its sides. This makes gardening easier for people with physical limitations. Squarefoot gardening is a great method for those with bad backs, knees, and those that are older.
Growing plants close together can act as a living mulch that helps to snuff out weeds and trap moisture by blocking the sun. This is one of the biggest benefits of growing a square foot garden because it makes caring for your garden easier.
Some plants can be intentionally stunted by planting them close together. Despite the close space of square foot gardening in some cases, aromatic herbs can benefit from a square foot garden because it increases the flavor of the plants. Since less space is available for your plants to grow, their flavor becomes concentrated.
What are the downsides of square foot gardening?
The benefits of square foot gardening are many, but there are also some risks and complications you may encounter in your garden.
Watering can be a challenge. The plants in a square foot garden tend to grow thickly because they are so close together. This can make watering a bit difficult as your plants get bigger later in the gardening season helping to cover the ground. You can fix this issue by setting up an irrigation system for your square foot garden that directs the water directly to the base of your plants.
Unwanted stunted growth. While some plants like your herbs can benefit from stunted growth this is not the case for all plants you may be growing. Square foot gardening places your plants very closely together. Therefore, you want to plant plants that need a lot of room in squares by themselves or in companion plantings with something that can grow close to them without causing problems.
Plants can compete with neighboring plants. Because of this beds must be planned well ahead of time. Because you pack so many plants into such a small space, you need to make sure that each plant complements the next square over on either side. It is also important to consider how each plant will shade or block other plants, so you can plan your taller plants and trellises to avoid blocking the sun.