Fig. 11末Beans planted at proper depth.
FOR CONTINUOUS CROPS
With some of the important vegetables a series
of plantings is desirable. Of string beans, lettuce, radishes, spinach,
sweet corn, peas, beets and carrots there should be several successive
plantings, two or three weeks apart, to provide a fresh and continuous
supply all season.
DEPTH OF PLANTING*
Do not plant too deeply. The old rule is to
plant to a depth of 5 times the thickness of the seed. This, however, is not
an absolute rule and is not safe in all cases. Consult planting table on
page 23 for depth.
When the green rows appear it is time to start
hoeing or cultivating. Never hoe or cultivate deeply末an inch or two is deep
enough末but stir the ground frequently, and always after rain or watering,
as soon as it is dry enough. The hoeing must not be done after rain or
watering when the ground is still so wet as to cause the muddy earth to pack
like cement, as this causes the earth to cake and dry out altogether too
rapidly, which is undesirable.
Frequent hoeing causes the formation of a dust layer
which prevents the soil underneath from drying out. The garden should always
be kept free from weeds, as these, if permitted to grow, consume plant food
and moisture needed by the plants.
Fig. 13末A small potato planted whole. The
depth of planting here shown is approximately 4-1/2 inches to the center of
the potato. This is the depth for late potatoes. Early potatoes are planted
2 inches nearer surface of ground.
Fig. 12末Lima beans, planted properly, with eyes down.
A plentiful supply of moisture is essential. If
there is not sufficient rainfall the moisture should be provided by watering
the garden. In doing this it is better to soak the ground once a week than
to sprinkle every day. Late afternoon is the best time to sprinkle.
To moisten the surface is not enough. There must
be a thorough wetting. If pipe connections are available a garden hose is
the best means of watering. One of the most satisfactory methods is to open
small furrows between rows and allow water to run into these trenches,
raking the earth back into place several hours later and making a mulch,
after the water has thoroughly soaked in. The sprinkling pot will serve if
hose is not available, but is is more laborious. Overhead sprinklers are
very satisfactory. They consist of pipes mounted on supports extending the
length of the area to be watered. Holes are drilled at intervals of 3 to 4
feet and small nozzles are inserted which yield a spray-like misty rain when
the water is turned on. By turning the pipes and also changing the position
of them it is possible to water an area of any size.
In home gardens proper drainage is often disregarded.
Drainage improves the soil by allowing air to enter; by raising the
temperature of the soil; by rendering the soil more porous and granular; by
enabling the roots of plants to grow deeply into the soil and by allowing
earlier cultivation in the spring.
Blind ditches, partly filled with stones or other
material covered with soil, or open ditches, will be found satisfactory for
the home garden. They should be along the lowest level of the garden, and
have suitable outlet. Lacking an outlet, lay tile 12 inches below surface of
garden, slanting toward a hole 10 feet deep and 5 feet across, in center of
garden. Fill this, two thirds to top, with stones, covering stones with clay
and covering the clay with loam.