Mothering Forum banner

1 - 5 of 5 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,473 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I am a little perplexed about plant spacing. I notice that gardens pictured in gardening magazines and books tend to be really crowded with everything close together. Are these plants planted according to the spacing recommended and as they mature they seem really close or are they planted closer? How important is spacing? I am curious because I would like to maximize my space. Thanks <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/treehugger.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Treehugger">
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,324 Posts
You can fudge the plant spacing a little bit, but I've found you can only do it in one way. For example, but the plants in the row closer, but put the rows the usual distance apart. The plants in most magazine are crowded, which results in lower yeild. They componsate for it by fertilizing heavily and often. That said, you can do companion planting pretty close if the roots are at a different level (think lettuce and tomatos) or if the nutrient requirements are different (beans and corn).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,288 Posts
I've been learning the specifics of biointensive growing lately, which I was just kind of fudging before, and it's been really enlightening. With good loose and fertile soil you can plant things at the within-the-row spacing each way, in wide intensive beds instead of single rows. So, say the plant likes 4" between plant in the row, and at least 1' between rows. In a 4' wide bed you could put like 16 rows of plants offset from each other with every plant still 4" apart. It takes well worked soil though, really really thoroughly wetted then totally dried for a couple days before digging, 1-2" of compost added on the whole thing, the top 12" dug and broken up with spade and fork and the next 12" down dug and broken up, those 2 layers not mixing. Organic fertilizers applied appropriately, and no pesticides, with companion or rotational plantings carefully chosen to keep up soil fertility. Done right it's supposed to increase yields of each plant and decrease work and water and nutrients required overall.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,167 Posts
Even at mostly appropriate spacing, gardens look wild and crowded in peak season <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> In the square foot gardening method, you use the "thin to" spacing to space all the way around, so if a plant says thin to 6", you can plant 4 per square foot. You may get less yield per plant depending on your soil quality and the success of the combinations you choose, but you should get a greater yield per square foot than conventional rows.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
855 Posts
Yeah I have wondered about this too. I've read more on the intercropping idea of growing certain plant groups together to save space. Like mixing slow and fast, or leafy and root crops at a close space. I know it helps keep away weeds.<br><br>
Square foot gardening really maximizes the space thing and I am just starting to read about it. I found a Design Your Own Garden tool online where you can create your own garden bed by drag and dropping different veggies into a A x B sized bed. The tool tells you how many plants a "square foot" of garden space can take, based on variety.<br><br>
Check it! <a href="http://www.gardeners.com/Kitchen-Garden-Planner/kgp_home,default,pg.html" target="_blank">http://www.gardeners.com/Kitchen-Gar...efault,pg.html</a><br><br>
Rhianna
 
1 - 5 of 5 Posts
Top