Ever bought a great looking gardening book, but after the temporary hit of ‘I’m so gonna do this’, it soon becomes another pretty shelf ornament on the alter of ‘too hard; too much to learn’?
There is a level zero for every garden skill,
but most books don’t start there.
Level Zero vegetable gardening is for ABSOLUTE beginners – very few rules, simple tools, and basic methods to experience success.
Come make a real start.
RULE 1: One new veg per season
VEGETABLE FAMILIES mostly share what they like and don’t like, so learn one entry level choice per family. We have seen the Level Zero alliums already, and we will explore other families too. My recommendation is choose just one new veg per season that your family loves. Along with a easy herbs, flowers, and asparagus or rhubarb, it is enough commitment. It will also teach you other essential skills. More on that later.
RULE 2: Organics is the answer
SOIL HEALTH in the books involves a lot of testing, tweaking, turning and frankly.. tension, if you are new to all this. Avoid it all by just focusing on organics (plant matter) instead. Lots of it in the soil all the time will give you a rich enough, open enough, healthy enough soil to plant almost anything, year after year. You can get fancy later, but so long as you are TRENCHING every bed every season, you have enough food to keep veg and worms in the bed very happy.
RULE 3: Seedlings for vegetables
PLANTING has many methods, but most are not Level Zero. Seed-raising, seed-saving, cuttings, division.. all might be in your future, but the good old punnet with a few strong little beauties is your friend for now. We will learn those other skills by growing herbs, bulbs and flowers that are all useful but not essential. One skill at a time.
RULE 4: Simple tools
TOOLS are cool, but you don’t need near so many as you think. A square head spade, a small rake, a trowel, garden knife, dibber and boots. That’s it. Any more is for later, or…just ’cause you just want to. I add sturdy scissors and a brush for harvest and clean–up. We will learn how to use each properly.
RULE 5: Don’t rush
The best advice I ever got was from my Gran, Nancy – “You can have it all, my dear.. just not all at the same time. There is a season for everything.”
Most folks who try gardening in a rush spend lots, go hard, crash and burn. Let’s do this so it sticks. Slow. There is no rush.
Look wide; grow well, folks 🌿