Garden Tip: Reap the rewards of planning your crops

<p>Many vegetables and herbs do well in containers. | Photo courtesy of Heather Prince</p>

Many vegetables and herbs do well in containers. | Photo courtesy of Heather Prince

As our thoughts turn to spring, a little planning will allow you to enjoy the experience.

If you’re doing a vegetable patch, grow the crops your family likes best. This way you’re not spending precious time and resources on food that goes uneaten. Decide what to start from seed and what to purchase as plants.

If your family loves salads, plan on starting new crops of quick-growing lettuces from seed every couple of weeks for a fresh supply. For crops that take longer to ripen, like tomatoes, sometimes it’s worth it to begin with plants so you get fruit sooner.

Most vegetables and herbs love sun — at least six hours a day.

Don’t have a sunny bed?

Many vegetables and herbs do well in containers. By placing pots of herbs close to the grill, they are handy for recipes and easy to keep watered.

Cherry tomatoes can do beautifully in a container for easy snacking and salads.

Mix it up! You can interplant vegetables and herbs in your sunny perennial beds. Thyme can be an excellent ground cover and used in recipes. Cucumber vines may be trained on a trellis or obelisk to give you some height and lots of crunchy vegetables.

Explore the possibilities!

Garden Tip is courtesy of Heather Prince, The Growing Place, 630-355-4000, www.thegrowingplace.com

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