Food Grown Right

One of the biggest hurdles between wanting to start a garden, and picking fresh fruit or vegetables you grew yourself is the dilemma of when to plant your seeds or transplants. If planted too early certain crops will suffer from frost, where others are hardy and require early planting before the threat of frost has past. Deciphering when to plant crops can be a new gardener's worst nightmare. But never fear, Food Grown Right, In Your Backyard is here!

Food Grown Right, In Your Backyard authored by Colin McCrate and Brad Halm -- co-founders of Seattle Urban Farm Co. -- makes knowing when to plant, what to expect, and maintaining a backyard garden both approachable and fun for anyone with a little interest in sustainable living. Need a hand deciding when to actually plant your crops? Colin and Brad provide their readers with extensive reference tables, outlining important dates enabling you to benefit the most from your backyard crops.

Know the best planting dates for your garden.

What sorts of crops are you most interested in? To determine the best planting date for your growing zone first start with your frost dates. Once you know your final spring frost date (the last day in spring frost creating temperatures can be expected) each individual plants "start" date can be calculated for your growing zone. Using Food Grown Right's when to plant chart located in the back of the book, the guess work is gone as all the important information is in one easy to use location. Now you'll never plant something too early or too late ever again!

For example: If we know that our spring frost date is March 28th, all we have to do is reference the "Planting Dates" section of Food Grown Right and input our data for various vegetables. Food Grown Right tells us that arugula can be started indoors as seeds 6 weeks before March 28th, or 2 weeks before March 28th if transplanting outdoors. Some quick subtraction and you know exactly when to start your arugula! For most things you can imagine, Food Grown Right takes the guesswork out of the question, "When to plan X,Y,Z?"

When to Plant Your Garden || Information from "Food Grown Right, In Your Backyard"


Of course Food Grown Right is so much more than a guide to when to plant various vegetables, herbs and fruits. Here are some of the other major gardening topics covered within:

Learn the growth habits of your various crops.

    • What happens when you plant summer squash next to your melon crops? In order to prevent your garden from becoming overgrown and unhealthy, growth form and space is a necessity to consider. Food Grown Right, In Your Backyard makes it easy to design a well-spaced and functioning garden.
    • For example: A sprawling crop, such as pumpkin, needs at least 2 to 3 feet of space to successfully grow. In comparison, many of the herbs, including cilantro or basil, need mere inches of space to prosper during their growth period, and can sustain next to crops with similar needs. Food Grown Right easily breaks down the space needed for each plant, if it can or cannot be grown in a container, and which plants can grow in close proximity to one another.

Crop fertilization. When, with what, and how?

  • When is the best time to fertilize your crops? While feeding your plants is a sure way to help protect and maintain their lifespan, Colin and Brad include a fertilization chart to guide gardeners on when to fertilize plants to most benefit overall crop production.
  • While all plants, perennial or annual, can be fertilized before they are planted, supplemental feeding is important to pay attention to; take caution in under or over-feeding. Carrots, for example, do not require supplemental feeding once they are planted, but tomatoes, a higher-maintenance crop, is able to receive fertilizing three and six weeks after supplemental fertilization.


Oftentimes, many gardeners make the mistake of ignoring proper plant maintenance within their backyard gardens, including the proper timing of when to plant different varieties of flowers, vegetables, fruits, and herbs. Food Grown Right, In Your Backyard, is the perfect template and reference guide to show gardeners of all levels of experience when to plant crops, how to design a backyard garden, and how to maintain what is being grown; all from the ground up. Whether you are amateur or advanced, try your hand at sustainable living, right in the convenience of your own backyard!


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