Creating and cultivating a vegetable garden can give great satisfaction
L'horticulture it is a panacea for the body and the mind. Most of those who are interested in this activity do not do it with a speculative interest and not even to save onpurchase of vegetables - even if a saving is possible - but rather to be able to portray some healthy products to be consumed with the family. L'vegetable garden it is also excellent psychotherapy for those who love the earth and a bit of outdoor life, and it is also a metaphor for life: the quantity and goodness of vegetables in fact depend on the care ofhorticulturist, knowing full well that unpredictable weather conditions - like problems in life - are always around the corner and can compromise the harvest.
The following brief notes are therefore dedicated to those who - having the possibility - want to draw nourishment and benefit for themselves and their family more than to those who intend to dedicate themselves to horticultural cultivation on a large scale. However, they too will find interesting news and useful advice.
Situation and exposure of the garden. The land must be sheltered as much as possible from the east and north winds. The best exposure - especially when you have a good amount of water during the summer - is that of twelve o'clock; the strong sun, with its well directed rays it is of great benefit to the garden, allowing you to obtain vegetables with the maximum compatible earliness in a given situation and in a given climate. Where it is not possible to have a land well exposed to the south, a vegetable garden can also be created in a land facing south-west, south-east, west or east, always making the choice in order to use as much as possible thecontribution of the sun.
Certain vegetables that require a given exposure should be taken into account, such as rosemary which, under our climates, does not withstand the sun, and therefore requires a somewhat shaded situation, possibly close to the walls. It should also be noted that, where there are walls in an east-west direction, the land behind them can be used to obtain earlier vegetables because those walls heated by the sun during the day, also in the night return some heat to the nearby ground. To separate the vegetable garden from the garden - if desired - they can be used tuje hedges, of lauri cerasi and other shrubs that are easy to maintain at a certain height, an excellent choice can be that of shrubs whose leaves have a medicinal value.
The terrain. The best land, of course, is the so-called garden land; that is, loose earth, not tenacious but not too loose, especially rich in humus. The ideal composition would be the following: clay (clayey earth, clay) from 20 to 30 parts; silica sand (hard river sand) from 5 to 10 parts; limestone sand from 5 to 10 parts; humus from 5 to 10 parts. Clay tends to give the soil compactness and toughness, and with this greater coldness, while sand, especially if siliceous, tends to give it looseness; humus, on the other hand, corrects both excess toughness and excess looseness and, due to its dark color, allows the soil to heat up more easily.
Not all vegetables, of course, grow well in all these lands. THE strong, clayey soils they adapt well to the cultivation of cabbages, broad beans, beets, while i loose siliceous soils rather they lend themselves to giving early peas, asparagus, potatoes, limestone ones, to giving peas, beans, lentils, and humiferous soils, richer in nutrients and humidity, they are better suited to the production of herbaceous vegetables, such as thistles, artichokes, spinach, ribs, salads, etc. When the soil is too compact or too loose it can be amended, this is done by providing it with the physical element it lacks: siliceous sands or limestone in clayey soils, clay or humus in loose soils. Humiferous soils, especially if acidic, can be amended with limestone.
Preparation and digging. Very compact lands should be dug or plowed into Autumn, without breaking the clods, which will be reduced to dust by the frost. Then between January and February the second processing takes place and fertilizes. The medium-textured lands instead move towards the end of thewinter, sooner if they tend to the strong. Following this rule is important because it allows you not to have to repeat the work and to fully benefit from fertilization, which otherwise would be partially lost.
If it is a question of working a land previously cultivated with lawn, or not cultivated, a deep burglary work at 40-50 cm is required, even 60 cm if the substrate is bad. Care must be taken and not to mix the different layers of the soil, the superficial one must be left on the surface and the lower one, below. In this case it is good to immediately give a good basic fertilization with manure, but not too deeply.
Fertilization. Stick to the old adage: hot (loose) lands cold fertilizers (cattle); cold (compact) lands hot fertilizers (equine, sheep). In any case, it is always important that the fertilizers are well mature. Vegetables 'eat' a lot and require readily assimilable substances in a sometimes very short period of time. The composition of organic fertilizers varies a lot, but on average the manure out of 12 parts of active ingredients it contains, has 4 parts of nitrogen, 3 of phosphorus and 5 of potassium. Comparing this proportion with that of the principles required by vegetables, the imbalance due to the lack of phosphorus and potassium compared to nitrogen can be observed. This decompensation can be corrected with the selective addition of elements. A quantity of manure adequate ranges from two to four kilos per square meter per year.
Water and irrigation. The intensity of horticultural cultivation makes the plants necessary one large amount of waterThis is also because, being in most cases of fast-growing plants, in mostly well-fertilized soils, the roots do not have great depth. This is why the abundant availability of water is one of the cornerstones of horticulture. It is inconceivable to have a vegetable garden in which there is no water at the discretion. It must be said that the choice of water is also of some importance from a hygienic point of view, especially since many vegetables are eaten raw. A cistern that collects rainwater from the roofs serves very well - therain water it is the best for irrigation - but it must be kept clean.
The most favorable hours forirrigation, during the'summer, are those in which the sun is less strong; and especially in the evening, when the soil is drier. Of spring it is better to wet during the day; there is less heat thansummer and wetting during the day makes the water a little warmer than in the morning. D 'winter one can almost say that it is better not to get wet, especially while the possibility of frost lasts, but the most suitable hours are from 10 to noon.