Hartley Magazine

All the latest news, hints, tips and advice from our experts

Vegetable gardening ‘needn’t be a big commitment’

Growing vegetables in a greenhouse can be quite a commitment, but there is no need for it to be a massively stressful and time consuming task.

One of the key advantages of a glasshouse brings to growing plants is that it can allow the gardener a space to work on varieties that require different climate conditions.

It is best to spread them out when they are initially placed in the greenhouse, so as to ensure that each individual plant has access to enough light when it grows.

Furthermore, timing has to be considered as a key factor in the fruit, as it is important to relocate it at the appropriate time of year.

In an interview with the Weekly Volcano newspaper, owners of the GardenSphere nursery in the Proctor District of New York Gabe Valbert claimed: "Tomatoes can't go outside till after May 1st."

"Early Girls are the fastest tomato – they mature in about 68 days. Peas are easy and are ready in 50 to 60 days," the expert continued.

Gardeners World notes that tomatoes thrive in a greenhouse, especially in midsummer, so owners of one of the features may wish to avoid moving them for a little longer than May – or simply plant later.

They are not particularly high maintenance plants, but there is a little work that needs to be done.

It is advisable to remove the plant's sideshoots on a regular basis, as failing to do so will result in nutrients being diverted away from the growing fruit and into unwanted extra stems.

Watering is obviously not to be overlooked, particularly when it becomes hotter, as they will always benefit from extra feeding.

Planning ahead is the key to nurturing a bountiful garden of fruit and vegetables.

Master gardener at Penn State Extension Frank Sommer recently claimed that this is one of the main considerations, noting first-time gardeners in particular should be made aware of this.

He added that careful consideration of location is also a primary concern, as many vegetables need at least six hours of sunlight every day.

Mr Valbert also noted that there are other vegetables that can grow quite quickly, so do not need to be given too much attention for very long.

"Spinach, lettuce varieties and all of that is ready in 45 to 60 days," he told the Weekly Volcano, adding: "I once grew melons, but tomatoes seem to do best. I'm thinking of trying bell peppers this year though."