The Gardening Life: You’ve Ordered Your Seeds, Now What?

You’ve Ordered Your Seeds, Now What?

By Dianne Venetta

Now’s the time to design your beds, your rows—you name it. Put your thinking caps on, because this part requires a bit of “know-how.” Planting vegetables that need full-sun in a part-shade area is a bad idea. Worse, it’s a waste of time. And your time is valuable. I mean, we’re talking hot commodity here!

It’s sort of like chemistry. If you deviate from the standard, you may end up with an entirely unexpected outcome, ie. mold on your broccoli, missing blooms from your tomatoes, carrots too small to eat… It’s no good. Trust me. More space on the northern-facing side of your yard is no reason to plant your veggies there.

Another point to remember is size. (Yes, size matters.) At the garden center, most plants are in small containers which make for easy transplanting. However, once home, do not make the mistake of spacing them according to their current size. They grow. Sometimes quite a bit. Caught me off guard a time or two, so be prudent, and read the label. You’ll be glad you did. There’s nothing lovelier than the layered look of foliage in your garden, from flowers and hedges to fruits and vegetables. But if the plants are placed too close together? You can stunt their growth. You can invite fungus, due to poor air circulation. Ick. Then, there’s the work of pulling them up and tossing them out. Gardening should be a pleasure, not a chore.

Something else to consider when designing your layout is the plants themselves. Certain plants thrive next to one another while others are simply ill-suited to be in the same row, let alone the same garden. This is known as companion planting and is Mother Nature’s secret to success. Encourage “friends” to be close, and “foes” to be distant. Examples of good friends are carrots and beets, corn and beans, strawberries and cantaloupe. Even limas and marigold, garlic and roses! Why? Because marigold is a wonderful plant for repelling nematodes that like to attack the roots of your plants. Garlic is rumored to increase the perfume of roses, repel aphids, and prevent black spot. Corn gives beans support to climb, while beans feed corn the nitrogen they need. Like a good hostess, you simply must know who likes whom, and who doesn’t!

Arch enemies? Well, that may be a bit dramatic, but beans and onions are no good together, nor are tomatoes and dill. You see, the dill plant attracts the hornworm and the hornworm, if given the chance, will consume an entire tomato plant in a single afternoon. I’ve heard some gardeners suggest planting dill near your tomatoes to lure the hornworm away, but I don’t trust the little bugger. They make the “hungry caterpillar” look like a waif!

And perhaps most important of all? Be sure you have a reliable water source nearby, else you’ll be trekking across the lawn lugging a heavy water pail in your hands. If there’s fish emulsion inside that pail, you’ll end up smelling like low tide. NOT recommended.

Please. Read the label, know your dimensions, then get busy and have some fun! Spring is around the corner and you absolutely must be prepared.

Meet the Author

Award-winning author D.S. Venetta lives in Central Florida with her husband and two children. It was volunteering in her children’s Montessori school garden that gave rise to her new series Wild Tales & Garden Thrills, stories bursting with the real-life experiences of young gardeners. Children see the world from a totally different perspective than adults and Venetta knows their adventures will surely inspire a new generation to get outside, and get digging.

When not crafting her next novel, D.S. Venetta hosts a garden blog,, where she demonstrates just how easy and fun gardening can be! Additionally, Venetta has been featured for her gardening advice on various websites, including GalTime, EarthEats, eHow, IdealHomeGarden, Huffington Post, and the cookbook Earth Eats: Real Food Green Living. Passionate about organic gardening, her dream is to see a garden in every school, library, and community.

Connect with Dianne on Twitter, her garden blog, website, Facebook BloominThyme, and Facebook DSVenetta.

You can read Dianne's gardening column on the 2nd Wednesday each month here at Pandora's Box Gazette.

#DianneVenetta #TheGardeningLife #Gardening #SpringPlanting

Young Living Banner.Lavender.jpg
Gillette on Demand.jpg
Boxed Wholesale Delivered
Ambit Energy
Finally Family Homes.LOGO.jpg
Rakuten Ebates.jpg

© Joanne Troppello and Mustard Seed Sentinel, 2019. Unauthorized usage or duplication of any content published on this website without specific written permission from the site owner is strictly prohibited. With appropriate and specific guidance, excerpts and links may be used provided full definitive credit is given to Joanne Troppello, the contributor, and Mustard Seed Sentinel. Publication start date March 2016. MSS is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program.

DISCLAIMER: MSS reserves the right to remove comments on articles and in the forum that are not in line with our family-friendly brand and faith-based Christian magazine theme. Please make every effort to comment on articles and participate in the chat rooms in a friendly way that is devoid of profanity and hateful speech. MSS reserves the right to decline site membership (both the free membership and paid subscription membership) to any members who are violating our requests to keep this online community family-friendly. No spam links or comments will be allowed. Spam, profanity, and hateful speech will be deleted.

Freelance content submissions are always welcome and can be submitted through the submit button on the top of the Home Page underneath the header. All submissions are subject to review and possible rejection if the content does not meet quality standards. Edits may be suggested or required for some submissions. At this time, compensation is not given for submissions. However, as the Mustard Seed Sentinel readership grows, financial compensation will be provided for freelancers who submit appropriate and acceptable content for publication, such as the following: author interviews they've completed, guest blogs, or news articles. All freelancers will have their byline listed. NOTE: Mustard Seed Sentinel is a family-friendly publication and only appropriate faith-based content will be accepted.

This magazine is available for free online.

If you like our content and want to support

this publication, feel free to donate below.

Our paid subscription page is for paying members only. Engaging content, educational information, and interactive activities like webinars, as well as podcasts, are available for these paying members.

Publication of Mustard Seed Marketing Group, LLC