Gardening

The garden in spring: most common tasks during this season of the year

It’s Spring! And the daylight hours are lengthening and it is time to prepare everything to have it ready and take the garden splendidly in spring.

Obtaining a good seasonal harvest will depend on carrying out the correct tasks at this time of the year and correctly taking care of during the season.

This is undoubtedly one of the times when more tasks are carried out in the garden, but the climate mostly accompanies and favors the realization of these family activities that will give color to the garden.

Garden in Spring: Most common tasks of this time of year

The time is approaching to replace winter crops with spring-summer crops, so work will have to be carried out, both in the garden itself and outside of it.

In the garden:

  • Plan the phased replacement of winter species by spring-summer ones. You will see how to program it by following, below, the best times for sowing and transplanting.
  • Prepare the soil, remove the spontaneous plants, fertilize it and aerate it. It must be done about 20 days before planting in soil or transplanting.
  • Plan the area, considering the necessary spaces for each species, considering the biological control of pests, exposure to light and the need for shade for the chosen species.
  • Plan irrigation, sun exposure and shade. You can consider a specific installation for the shade and, especially, for irrigation during the summer. As for example the option of Drip Irrigation .

Outside the orchard:

  • Prepare seedbeds for the plants to be transplanted in spring and summer.
  • Plan an appropriate Irrigation System for the entire season.
  • Carry out preventive treatments for Pest Control .

spring garden

Calendar: What to sow in spring

To keep a Field Notebook (work schedule) it is necessary to first determine which species we want in our garden, both to produce, and to increase biodiversity and attract Pollinators and Auxiliary Fauna in order to help control pests of natural way.

It is important to consider that there are plants that can be sown directly into the ground, while there are others that will have to be sown in a seedbed and then transplanted.

  • Chard : It can be sown in a seedbed, transplanted until March and harvested until June.
  • Garlic : it can be sown in the ground from January and harvested until June.
  • Eggplant : it is sown in the seedbed from March and can be transplanted in April and May to be harvested from June to September.
  • Sweet Potato or Sweet Potato : will be sown directly on the ground between April and May, to be harvested between September and November.
  • Zucchini and Squash : They are prepared in the seedbed from April and can be quickly transplanted for harvests from July to November.
  • Onion and chives: from the sowing in the seedbed from the winter, it can be transplanted from February and harvested between May and September.
  • Peas (Peas) and Broad Beans : they are sown directly into the ground and harvested between March and May.
  • Turnip: it is sown directly in the ground during the winter and until April, to have harvests until June.
  • Cucumber : it is sown in the seedbed from March, it is transplanted until June and it is sown until September.
  • Pepper or Chili : it is sown in the seedbed between March and April, and can be transplanted until June and harvested from June to November.
  • Leek or Garlic : it is sown in the seedbed until March, transplanting until May it can be harvested until August.
  • Radish and Beetroot or Betabel : it is planted directly in the ground until April and harvested until June.
  • Lettuce : seedlings can be prepared from winter and transplanted until May, to harvest until July.
  • Melon : it is sown in the seedbed from May, transplanted in June and harvested until September.
  • Watermelon : it is sown in a seedbed and transplanted until June, obtaining sowings until September.
  • Tomato : it is sown in a seedbed and transplanted from March to June, for harvests between June and October.
  • Carrots : it is sown directly in the ground and harvested until June.

The dates are approximate and may vary slightly according to the climatic conditions of the region, especially taking care to avoid and correctly protect the orchard against the last frosts .

spring garden

Associations and crop rotation

The key to a successful garden in each growing cycle is to know in depth the importance of the association and rotation of crops following these criteria:

  • The nutrient requirements of each plant : after having grown a demanding plant (such as cabbages, broccoli, sweet potato) or moderately demanding (such as chard, carrot, onion), it will be necessary to use the soil with a less demanding one (such as beans, radish or zucchini ).
  • Botanical family to which it belongs : it is important to try to avoid planting plants of the same family as in the previous crop.
  • The affinity or intolerance between plants : continuing with the previous point, it is convenient to sow nightshades (tomato, pepper, aubergine) where there were liaceae (such as leek, onion or garlic); while it is better to avoid planting nightshades where there were cucurbits before (such as zucchini, squash, watermelon or melon).
  • The root systems : it is advisable to take advantage of the root systems to facilitate drainage and aeration of the soil, sowing intermediate rooting plants (aubergine, pepper, carrot) after those with superficial rooting (garlic, onion, spinach) and finally those of deep roots (tomato, sweet potato, pumpkin)
  • The part of the plant that is consumed : it is an important point to make the most of production and avoid waste, as well as to maintain a colorful and healthy garden, since leafy vegetables need a lot of nitrogen, while fruit vegetables require more of phosphorus and the tubers absorb more potassium.

As you can see, it is a topic as interesting as it is important. To know it well, I recommend you read this post on Crop Associations , this other article on Crop Rotation and I also leave you this practical Crop Association Table .

spring crops

How to prevent pests and diseases

The aphid , the Red Spider , the Trips , the whitefly , the snails and slugs , the Mindiu , the powdery mildew , the Roya … are very common pests and diseases in the garden.

Hand in hand with the association and rotation of crops, to maintain a healthy and balanced garden it is important to plan the control of pests and diseases, which occur, especially in spring and summer.

Since by running a vegetable garden we are making, in one way or another, a simplification of the ecosystem, insects and microorganisms (mainly fungi) can cause serious problems if good prevention and control are not carried out.

There are several ways to prevent and control pests and diseases in the garden. We have already seen that association and crop rotation is one of them to keep the soil healthy, fertile and biologically active, but it is also important to consider:

  • Repellent plants : the cultivation of aromatic, medicinal and ornamental species, such as calendula , nasturtium , basil , borage and Chinese carnation, which give color and repel pest insects. In this post I give you examples of Plants that Help Control Pests .
  • Trap plants : which attract beneficial insects or protect those that are planted in a second line of the garden.
  • Traps for pests : manufactured to attract and capture insects, such as tapes with glue for ants and light or colored traps.
  • Preventive preparations with plant extracts : made from the fermentation or decoction of dried or fresh plants, such as onion , horsetail and nettle , to spray the plants once or twice a month. Here are 7 Recipes of Biopreparations against Plagues .

Whether it is to start a garden at home or to keep the garden healthy and productive during this time of year, it is essential to do a detailed planning, keep a control and an agenda to prevent pests and diseases.

Each orchard, according to its size, location and crop rotation, takes specific care focused, especially during spring and summer, on the orientation and slope of the soil to meet the needs of light, shade and irrigation.

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