You might try to categorize your garden. Have a salad garden, a summer garden and a eat and store garden.
The salad garden will include early season crops like lettuces, radishes, beets, carrots, scallions Asian greens and salad turnips. These all have shorter days to maturity and grow well in early spring. You don't need a lot space to grow a large amount of food either. A 6 ft by 8 ft area can grow a lot of food. I have designed a plan for you to reference below.
Here is the one that gets everyone excited. Tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, melons, zucchini, summer squash, and the list goes on. A nice summer garden can keep your family in fresh produce for weeks. You can also can or freeze if you have too much. I consider it a bonus, it is literally like put putting money in my pocket. Last year we had an abundance of cherry tomatoes so we washed and froze them. Megan used them through the winter to make pasta dishes. Spaghetti squash with a marinara and cherry tomatoes is so, so good in winter. Too me, that's comfort food. A 30 ft by 40 ft area can yield a lot of produce for a family, if planned correctly.
Store and Eat garden:
This is where we plant potatoes, corn and all the winter squash you can imagine. We plant corn, then butternut and spaghetti squash next to the corn. The winter squash will vine out and cover the ground around the corn and choke out the weeds. Butternut and spaghetti squash will keep for 8 months, if it is stored properly. You can freeze corn on the cob, or you can cut it off and place in freezer bags and eat throughout winter.
Careful planning can make a huge difference, not only in the quality of your garden but also the quantity. Megan and I have been growing vegetables year around on our farm in Middle Tennessee for many years. We want to share our knowledge, and hope people can draw some inspiration on what we have learned over the years. We currently operate an on farm market with seasonal produce. Please share this with anyone you think might benefit from it.
Homesteader and Market Gardener
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