how to start a garden in your backyard

Quick Fix: How to Start a Garden in Your Backyard

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For as long as I can remember, I have been a picky eater. In particular, my strong dislike of cheese has always produced an incredulous response. In fact, after all of these years, my eating habits are a consistent subject of conversation in my family. However, I didn’t think anyone could get pickier than me until my son arrived. He makes me look like Anthony Bourdain. However, there’s one thing he has always eaten with no fuss: vegetables. Since he was really young, his mother, a great lover of cooking, connected him to gardening and the growing of vegetables.

A 2009 study revealed that kids that were involved in the growing of fruits and vegetables were more likely to try those foods. If you want your kids to eat their vegetables and fruit then create a garden with them. They will also get a valuable education about what it takes to grow and produce food. Here is the latest quick fix: How to start a garden in your backyard.

Garden Bed

Items Needed:

  • Pointed and Flat Shovels
  • Tarp
  • Water
  • Fertilizer
  • Compost
  • Garden Hoe
  1. Remove the sod using a shovel. For thick grass, you may need to use a pointed shovel.
  2. Create a rectangle bed using a flat shovel to straighten the edges.
  3. Dig out the top (top few inches) soil and put it on a section of the tarp.
  4. Dig out a deeper second layer of soil (at least six inches deep) and put it on a separate section of the tarp. At this point, you should have two piles of dirt on the tarp. The subsoil pile should be significantly bigger than the top soil pile.
  5. Add compost evenly to each pile. The compost will add necessary nutrients to the soil.
  6. Put the top soil back into the hole first, spreading it evenly around.
  7. Then add in the subsoil on top.
  8. Plant your seeds and water.

Raised Bed

Items Needed:

  • Three 2x8x8 Untreated Wood Boards (You don’t want chemicals in your food.)
  • Four Eight-Inch Cut 2×4 pieces
  • Outdoor Deck Screws
  • Drill
  • Saw
  • Gardening Soil
  1. Measure and level the ground where you will put your garden.
  2. Take one 2x8x8 and cut it in half.
  3. Lay the other two 2x8x8 and cut down, if you want your bed to be smaller.
  4. Place the eight-inch 2×4 on either of the 2x8x8 boards, making sure they are flush on the ends.
  5. Pre-drill two holes several inches apart through the boards with a drill bit. Pre-drilling will keep the wood from cracking.
  6. Then fasten the 2x4s to the 2x8x8s using the deck screws.
  7. Take an 8 ft. board and 4 ft. board and make an “L.” Make sure your 2×4 is on the inside corner of the “L.” It will act as a post.
  8. Pre-drill two holes through the two boards to connect them, making sure the corners are flush.
  9. Drill in the outdoor deck screws and repeat with the other sides.
  10. Measure and cut a 2×4 and attach it across the bottom middle to keep the sides from bowing outward.
  11. Place cardboard along the bottom to keep weeds from compromising the garden. If you have moles, you may want to consider lining the bottom with chicken wire.
  12. Fill the bed with garden soil.
  13. Plant your seeds and water.

  • Using a gardening kit is even easier:

Huddle up with your kids at dinner and ask, “Do you know where these vegetables come from?”