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Bulletin P

Abstract

The farm garden may easily occupy 1/2 acre and supply enough vegetables for a medium-sized family the year around. The garden on the city lot necessarily will have to be smaller, but by intensive methods of cropping may be made to produce enough fresh vegetables during the growing season for a small-sized family. Farm gardens are often too small for the needs of the family, because the labor required by a larger garden is thought to interfere with farm duties. Using field methods of tillage, the size of the farm garden can be increased with no increase in labor.

Many farm gardens should be relocated because continuous cropping without adequate rotation has reduced yields and quality of the vegetables. Soils for vegetable crops should be high in organic matter. The easiest way to secure this is through the application of animal manure or the plowing under of a green manure crop, preferably a legume. A good plan for the farm vegetable garden would be to plant an area in soybeans or other legumes equal to that planted to vegetables. The next year plant the vegetables on that portion of the garden in which the green manure was grown.

Select a level site or one with a gentle slope, avoiding steep slopes because small seeds and seedlings easily wash out with heavy rains. North and east exposures are preferable since they do not dry out as readily and are cooler. Protection from winds is always desirable, but of course vegetables will not grow well close to tree rows or in the shade of buildings.

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