Posts or supports for trellises can be made from metal, wood or plastic like PVC pipe. If you try something that doesn’t work, well, how about that! This garden plan is another exact layout. Here is a photo of my Uncle’s garden from this spring. Run them as a straight fence (upper left), in zigzag pattern (upper right), with space between the frames (lower left), or as an arbor (lower right). To do this it requires great understanding of your microclimate, crop selection (especially cold-hardy crops like these ones) and careful garden planning.Because there’s always lots to do in a year-round garden I wanted to share this guide. An inter-planted garden does not resemble a traditional garden with all the vegetables planted in smart little rows. These can include bed planting, vertical growing, inter-planting, and succession planting. The number of ways different vegetables can be combined is limited only by your creativity. This technique may be useful for container growing or where space is extremely limited, but will demand correspondingly more attention by the gardener. Plants can be arranged to take advantage of contrasts in texture and color, making a garden more visually interesting. They are cheap and they aren’t hard to move around either! Begin in the first bed by digging out the top layer of soil to the depth of a shovel and move the soil into a pile near the farthest bed. For example, in one square foot you can grow 16 radishes, nine beets or one cabbage plant. Make beds any convenient length, but not wider than four or five feet across for easy reaching from either side. Planning an Intensive Garden The purpose of gardening intensively is to harvest as much produce as possible from a given space. In this type of garden, much of the area is taken by the space between the rows. With examples, you would get a better understanding of the entire concept. Staggered plantings also work well with lettuce, radishes and other fast-yielding crops. Flowers will be more exposed to the wind, which may discourage pollinators like bees, and can cause flower abortion. This technique made its way to America around 1966, thanks to Alan Chadwick who demonstrated this technique on an inhospitable hillside at the University of California’s Santa Cruz campus. In your design, consider the different growing habits of vegetable plants: for example, combine upright plants like caged tomatoes with a scattering of scallions, or grow melons around sweet corn. Just wire them on and VIOLA! A good rule is to install the sturdiest trellis you can afford. Intensive gardening in some spaces, row gardens in others, tight plots and spacious expanses of field crops… all have their place. A higher percentage of the available growing space is used, there is less room for weeds to grow, and water can be used more efficiently. You can notice these intensive pronouns being ‘bold’ in the following examples. For successful inter-planting combinations, plan your garden around the largest, longest-growing vegetable staples like tomatoes or winter squash. Carrots take about 15-20 days to sprout and 90 days to reach maturity; radishes come up quickly and are ready for harvest in only 30 days, so when planting carrots from seed in your garden you can plant radishes at the same time, just tuck them in between the rows of carrots. For some gardeners a small garden is not practical. Remove plants once their initial flush of bearing is over. Building and installing trellises can involve time and expense. To grow all the vegetables you want, you may have to use transplants instead of direct seeding, which will increase your costs. Write us and let us know what works for you and what doesn’t! You can arrange vertical frames in a number of ways. In this style of gardening, the beds are very large, allowing gardeners to walk in the beds, rather than along established pathways, to perform garden maintenance. Certain wood preservatives can damage growing plants. Use care when handling treated wood. The BEST thing in the world I have found are cattle panels. You can even design wheelchair access growing beds to be three feet high and no more than two feet wide. Growing plants vertically can mean higher yields per base area. You can see below an example of a garden layout allowing for access to beds with paths between rows. Smaller gardens require less labor and expense than larger gardens. They advocate r… The goal of the method is long term sustainability on a closed system basis. The growing area is divided into square foot sections. These crops tend to produce a good yield in small areas (Like a backyard). Your email address will not be published. Transpiration is higher in plants growing upright, so they may require extra water. “Intensive” gardeners must pay close attention to scheduling plantings to ensure that no part of a smaller garden is left unoccupied. Remember that later planted succession crops mature faster than earlier planted ones because growing conditions, especially temperature and light intensity, usually are more favorable. For example, by planting lettuce or spinach every two weeks, you can harvest it all season with no gaps in production. Making plants share space means the individual plants may yield less, but the total garden yield will be greater because the space is being used more efficiently. It’s for CHICKENS… period. ARGH. DON’T make the same mistake I did! The beds will settle some through the growing season of course. The tragic reality is that very few sustainable systems are designed or applied by those who hold power, and the reason for this is obvious and simple: to let people arrange their own food, energy, and shelter is to lose economic and political control over them. Plastic and string meshes can be disposed of, plants and all, at clean-up time. One of the better things I did when I lived in the desert was put a drip hose in the beds of vegetables that needed the most water. The spacing should be whatever the seed packet recommends for spacing between plants. The gardener can sit on the edge of the bed to work. Similarly, vining squash or melons can be sown between trellised pea plants. More traditional gardens consist of long, single rows of vegetables spaced widely apart. Make freestanding beds no higher than eight inches or they will dry too quickly or be washed easily by rains. The practice of intensive gardening is not ... example, carrots and radish are commonly planted together in the same row. Notice the two different raised bed techniques…. You can make a vertical frame of electrical conduit fastened with slip fittings, or 1/2 inch water pipe with threaded elbow couplings (detail). Since these beds will be in place a number of years, building up and loosening it’s soil when first establishing the beds is important. A nonprofit farming cooperative in the South Bronx, New York, La Finca del Sur is led by Latina and black women. The type of vegetable determines what kind of trellis used. No need to till the path ways. The Multi-Bed Garden Plan. Once you’ve decided their location, plant smaller, fast-growing vegetables around them. Intensive inter-cropping, along with companion planting, will provide the maximum amount of food production, and will reduce your garden size, water and nutrient requirements, and allow you to grow the healthiest plants. Be warned! Once established, especially with permanent “sides,” it may be difficult to use a standard size plow or tiller for cultivation. Container and Pot Sizes: How Much Soil Do I Need. Schedule plantings so no area of the garden remains empty for long. You can make permanent raised beds for disabled gardeners, just raise them somewhat higher for easy reaching. This would actually deplete nutrients from your soil. If you are interested in preserving, a smaller garden may not provide enough produce for winter use. If plants are not naturally twining, they will have to be trained or secured to trellises, and heavy fruit will require additional support. All gardeners can grow vegetables more efficiently by using some of the intensive growing techniques described here. Attach strings to support the plants. Orient trellises to run in an east-west direction, and locate them on the north side of the garden to avoid shading other plants. Also, not all types of vegetables grow well in bed culture. Inter-planting can be defined as planting different crops in adjoining areas to take advantage of differences in growing habits, light requirements or nutrient needs. Intensive gardening methods The purpose of an intensively grown garden is to harvest the most produce possible from a given space. Additionally, vegetable plants can be trained on trellises to provide welcome summer shade to smaller cooler seasonal things like lettuce, spinach, or beets; or privacy screens, as well as to produce food for the table. Lots of gardeners use vertical growing to save space in the garden. Take the Self Reliant PathCome Homestead with Us! I’ve even been known to plant lettuce under my corn so it has plenty of shade. In each section, plants or seeds are carefully spaced. To manage smaller gardens successfully, gardeners must use different growing methods. Whether raised or not, the advantage of beds is that vegetable plants can be grown more closely together. If you get the soil from an unknown source I would strongly urge you to have it tested first. Crowded plants yield poorly and are more subject to diseases. The difference is how they are grown. And it takes forEVER to stop leaching out into your soil! An example of intensive gardening is growing radishes and carrots in the same space. I once bought four ton of top soil and it took me two growing seasons to get it balanced in a way that would allow ANYTHING to grow in it! The site for planting is cleared of all weeds and debris then 3 to 4 inches of organic matter is spread over the site and dug or tilled into the soil. Wooden posts should be treated with a preservative or they may last only one season. A variety of material including wood or concrete blocks can be used for the sides. We know how to solve every food, clean energy, and sensible shelter problem in every climate; we have already invented and tested every necessary technique and technical device, and have access to all the biological material that we could ever use. . Intensive gardening done in containers on the patio may include a potted tomato to a variety of lettuces and spinach grown together in a container. Back at the first bed, loosen the second, deeper layer of soil. Smaller gardens also require careful management. The closer spacing of inter-planted vegetables will discourage some weeds. Grow crops that are richer in calories. That was a boon! Move to the second bed and remove the top layer of soil. Note: Soil preparation is the key to successful intensive gardening. But the weeds that do grow must still be controlled. Redwood or western red cedar of at least two-inch thickness are long-lasting, or you may use pressure-treated wood. Longer poles made of bamboo can be arranged in teepees to support climbing vegetables like pole beans. Old railroad ties have been creosote-treated, and may contain enough residue to cause plant injury. Alan Chadwick and John Jeavons are popular proponents of biointensive gardening methods, and a number of the techniques stem from French intensive gardening. These include sweet potatoes, potatoes, parsnips, and leeks. Eventually the winter squash plants will cover the entire lettuce bed. The goal here is to produce a lot of food in a very small area, by putting in some serious manual labor to produce perfect planting beds and intensive plantings. The initial labor and cost to establish the beds may be high. Careful management is the key to successful intensive vegetable gardens. Some examples of these crops include wheat, Barkley, rye, and wheat. FarmHomestead is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. It incorporates multiple beds. Old mulch, compost or other organic material can be turned under each year which will further enrich the soil. A traditional example of this technique is growing beans and corn together. See more ideas about vegetable garden, organic gardening, gardening tips. May 27, 2018 - Learn how to maximize what you can produce in your vegetable garden with these intensive methods. Metal posts will last longer and are easier to install than wooden ones. Woods treated with these materials are greenish in color. This is by far my favorite part of gardening… trying new things!! At least if you like things neat and pretty like I do! Growing vegetables in containers is another type of intensive gardening and is described in Container Gardening. Most gardeners practice a simple succession planting in row gardens by following a lettuce planting in spring with a late crop of, say, beans, or by staggering plantings of beans or sweet corn to ensure a steady harvest. Backyard gardeners can easily employ intensive gardening methods to increase both the variety and yield of crops they grow. The initial labor and cost... Trellis and Vertical Growing. A tomato plant for example, may require the sole use of a compartment, while crops like carrots can be seeded over the entire area. Intensive gardening is a strategic way to plan your garden beds to maximize the number of plants produced. Better yet, use mulches (mulch, MULCH!!) The fast growing radish acts as … This is a good option for gardeners with sandy soil that would dry too quickly if formed in raised beds. Some growing seasons can complicate trying to stagger plantings. I got a number of railroad ties for free. Use small tools like onion hoes, or pull weeds by hand. Decreasing garden size provides more yard space for other activities. How Accountability Is Key To Self-Discipline, Know About Hydroponic Nutrients and Their Benefits, The GMO Agenda Takes a Menacing Leap Forward with…, The ideal emergency preparedness food: Sprouts. Soil improvement efforts are focused on the beds alone, not in the paths. A method of inter-planting which has received notice recently is known as “square foot gardening.” This technique (based on a book of the same name by Mel Bartholomew) involves planting vegetables very intensively. Here are the principles and methods of intensive vegetable gardening: Soil improvement: The soil is well-prepared before planting. Biointensive agriculture is an organic agricultural system that focuses on achieving maximum yields from a minimum area of land, while simultaneously increasing biodiversity and sustaining the fertility of the soil. to control weeds; this will GREATLY reduce watering needs. Raised beds are growing areas whose surface is “raised” above the surrounding area. the sides of the beds with an organic mulch like straw, leaves or grass clippings. Many Europeans garden using a system commonly referred to as the French Intensive Gardening method, which originated in 1890 on a small plot of land on the outskirts of Paris, France. An intensive garden minimizes wasted space. Once marked, you can use a hoe or rake to move soil from paths up into beds. I swore I would never use than evil stuff again… I’d use plain string first… that stuff is awful! Space plants by thinning or transplanting so they are evenly spaced in the beds. The benefits can include greater yields per square foot, and more attractive vegetable plantings. … An edible forest in Mexico City, Mexico with 45 tree varieties, a seed bank, and a large section of bio-intensive gardening, Huerto Tlatelolco was created with the objective of building the local community. Most crops are adaptable to growing in beds, but small-sized vegetables like lettuce, greens, dwarf or bush varieties and cabbage perform the best. I cover various intensive and non-intensive gardening methods in-depth in my new book Grow or Die: The Good Guide to Survival Gardening. Avoid materials which have been treated with creosote or penta (pentachlorophenol). P.S. The beds are also double dug, which means that the soil is worked to twice the usual depth. Raised beds are not the answer for all gardeners lacking space. I had always mixed in compost before but see now that this deeper preparation works magic. Biointensive farming or gardening also aims to use less water and energy than traditional gardening methods, while sustaining and even building soil that’s healthy, vigorous and alive with many different kinds of microorganisms. They are about four to five feet high and I connect them with steel posts. For example, in the Southwest, Native Americans gave us the concept of the “Three Sisters” planting of corn, beans and squash. And to think I could have saved myself all that trouble by NOT using raised beds in the first place! By establishing permanent paths and beds (even if they’re NOT raised) you still will avoid compacting the soil in growing areas. Intensive Gardening Method Raised Beds. Anything you can throw in a compost pile, you can use for mulch. Consider the eventual harvest size of the vegetables you inter-plant, and space them so that at maturity they will just be touching each other. Carrots grow especially well this way. Posts can be used to support plastic or string mesh, or chicken wire. For some people, a small-sized garden is preferable to a larger one. If you only used intensive spacing and double digging but didn’t compost, you wouldn’t be able to replenish your soil nutrients at the rate they were being used. Instead of placing seedlings in rows, intensive gardening involves utilizing space-saving techniques in order to efficiently grow in a concentrated area. Problems in intensive gardening. There is simply NO describing the feeling of going outside after a high wind only to find your prize melons pushed over backward on the ground and the vine snapped in two at the base!! All trellises or climbing supports should be installed while plants still are small to avoid disturbing the roots of course! Properly amended raised beds will have soil loose and friable enough to be turned easily with a shovel. Privacy Policy, « Tomato Sauce—Basic, Herbed, or Vegetables Added. To prevent excessive drying and washing of soil, mulch (mulch, MULCH!!) Harvest To Table How to Store Harvest, Cure, and Store Winter Squash. Root crops like carrots and beets still can be sown in rows, but plant two or three rows the length of the growing bed. Six to 15 hours of physical labor are required to make each bed. Remember, it’s YOUR garden. You also can avoid crowding by inter-planting fast growing vegetables with slow growing vegetables, for example, radishes or lettuce with tomatoes. Beds are a more efficient way to organize the garden than rows, especially for small-sized vegetables. Improved air circulation can even further reduce diseases. Types and Installation . A wide variety of trellising materials is available. See more on these intensive gardening methods: Companion planting example: plant flowers and vegetables in one compact area in order to save space and resources. Dump this into the first bed, breaking up any clods of clay. Raised beds are growing areas whose surface is “raised” above the surrounding area. Removing dead plants from chicken wire fencing is frustrating and futile. As in any system, intensive gardening has a few problems. Planting crops that have a high yield per square foot makes better use of … Or, do you … (Source: HouzBuzz) Companion Planting. For example, GB is like a stool that only works if it has all its legs. Tire gardening. 1.2: Vertical Gardening The use of trellises, nets, strings, cages, or poles to support growing plants constitutes vertical gardening. The wood should be pressure-treated for the longest life. A common error in inter-planting is crowding vegetable plants. You will place your plants in more space saving arrangements , and this way your biointensive gardening efforts will be fruitful. Biointensive sustainable garden plants include any plants you can plant in your garden. Growing plants closer together demands particular attention to pest control, fertilization and training of plants. You don't need a lot of space for plants to thrive. So step one in intensive gardening is soil preparation. You can first outline your freestanding beds by marking out a tilled area where you intend to make your beds. Once the sides are installed, fill beds with garden soil which has been amended with peat, shredded leaves, compost or other organic materials. If the trellis is part of your landscaping it should be aesthetically pleasing, too. Climbing supports must be sturdy, especially in windy sites. "The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but will interest his patient in the care of the human frame, in diet and in the cause and prevention of disease" ~ Thomas Jefferson. Plants like lettuce and radishes can be sown by lightly sprinkling seed over the bed and gradually thinning young plants to their recommended final spacing. Amend soil with compost or organic matter before planting, use a starter fertilizer or compost tea for early spring plantings, and top dress vegetables at the proper stage of their growth. Two gardening authors and their systems of intensive vegetable gardening have been highly influential in North America for more than 30 … Dispose of scraps and sawdust in a landfill. Raised beds warm faster and dry earlier in the spring, allowing earlier spring planting. Root crops like beets and carrots also will thrive in the looser soils of beds. Raised beds can be free-standing or built with more permanent sides to help hold the soil in place. Succession planting demands careful attention to days-to-maturity for each vegetable you plant, and attention to soil fertility to keep the intensively planted vegetables growing well. Without a doubt, the greatest drawback is the labor involved in double-digging the beds Initially. (I guess it really just depends on how long your arms are!). (unless of course that’s your intention!). We may also earn a commission from purchases made at other retailers linked from our site. No, you did NOT hear me say that! For example, if the seed packet says to thin lettuce so plants stand six inches apart in rows two feet apart, ignore the row spacing, and thin all lettuce plants to stand six inches apart. Live and Learn! See below…. By Victoria Bailey Bio-intensive gardening is a system of producing food that concentrates on harvesting the largest amount of crops using the least amount of resources. Besides saving space, vegetables grown this way are easier to pick and may have less rot because the fruit does not contact the soil. It is truly a wonder to behold. It's so easy—all you need are a few materials and a vision for your future garden… Permanent raised beds have supported sides. Inter-plant lettuce with pole beans; the lettuce will be slower to bolt when growing in the partial shade provided by the taller beans. You can use slings to support fruit as it develops. 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