Garden Planning is best done in the winter. The nights are long and catalogs are released as early as December by a lot of US seed companies. Before you start planning your garden beds out, do you know where you will plant perennials like artichoke, asparagus, strawberries, and rhubarb?
Even if it's too late to plant these crops, you can still do a lot of prep work that will lessen any heartache later if you choose the wrong spot. Many annuals can go in areas of our gardens that have less than ideal conditions come fall, but what about plants that will live in the same place year after year?
For instance, how well does the soil drain when wet weather arrives? I have an area that gets great all day sun, but come the famous Seattle deluge this area turns into a swamp due to the high clay content.
Speaking of sun, where is it these days? Tracking the position of the sun will help you when thinking about planting perennials and early spring annuals. In an earlier blog post (Winter Greens), I discuss the sun and growing food year round.
Also, will any of your perennials grow so big they will provide unwanted shade on annual veggies when they mature? Make sure you research final sizing in a seed catalog or planting guide.
Finally, if you need help figuring all this out, in January I will be releasing a guide to garden planning based on my most popular workshop of the last five years. This guide is sure to make your planning easier and dare I say it- really fun! Look here to purchase!