Create a list of all the veggies and herbs you’d like to grow. Each grows best within a certain temperature range. Some prefer the cool weather in early spring or fall. Others need hot summer weather. These temperature preferences affect the outdoor planting dates, as shown on seed packets, catalog descriptions, and plant labels.
Find out how long it takes each crop to grow from seed to harvest. The fastest growers mature in as little as a month, while some take up to four months or more. Also, note whether the crop yields a single harvest, like carrots, or a repeat harvest, like tomatoes or basil. The listed “days to harvest” for the repeat veggies is when the first fruits are ready to pick, not when the plants are finished.
Finally, note the amount of physical space each crop occupies. On the seed packet or plant label, look for spacing recommendations within the row, and how far the rows should be spaced from one another. For example, carrots spaced 4 inches (0.33 feet) apart within rows spaced 12 inches (1 foot) apart require 48 square inches (.33 square foot) per plant. You will discover useful context, like one corn plant uses the same amount of growing space as 12 carrots, nine onions, or six heads of lettuce.
Understand your Garden Goals