2020 GARDEN LAYOUT
I have a 3000′ main vegetable garden on my property that I have divided into three 1000 sq ft sections. I try to rotate my tomatoes each year to a different section although there is some overlap. This year my tomatoes will be in section 1, and the other 2 sections will be for other fruit and veggies.
Here is the MAIN VEGETABLE GARDEN for 2020-to see it LARGER, GO TO:
I did these plans at GroVeg.com. I keep a big printed version in my garden shed to refer to throughout the season and make notes on.
For a complete list of all my veggies I am growing this year go to my ‘seed lists’ at the top of the menu.
To see my current post go to my home page: giantveggiegardener.com and you will be able to follow all my posts.
Looks great. Question: Are you planting in raised planter boxes?
All my vegetable beds are raised but some have a wood frame around them and others are dirt that has been raked up into a raised bed but nothing framing them. Raised beds of some sort are best with our soil-easier to amend.
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Hello from Albuquerque!
I’m wondering what you have found to be optimal spacing of tomato plants. It looks like each plant gets 4sq ft. Do you always provide so much space? Have you tried or would you recommend less? I notice you place the plants in the center of the bed.
In the last few years, I have planted 4 plants per 4sq ft. I have a couple “square foot” garden beds that are 4×4 so essentially it’s one tomato per corner. They did pretty well the first year and I think the following years I didn’t feed or water quite enough to do as well. I’m thinking they need more space and more food. (Shade also seemed to help. Do you shade your tomato plants at any point? 🙂 )
My guess is you get higher yields and bigger tomatoes when you afford more space, but having limited space I’m wondering what’s a good balance so I can still fit in all the varieties I want to grow this year (2021)!
I would love to hear your thoughts and experiences on general placement in a bed and spacing between plants.
Because I mostly grow indeterminate heirloom and OP tomato plants which can get very big, I give them from 36-40 inches spacing. I think I’m mostly around 40 inches between those plants.I use cages made out of rebar and keep 3-6 inches distance between them (part of the 40 inches). Yes in the center of the bed except for double beds in which case I off set them so each get more sun (not blocking a lot of sun for the plant behind it). Think zig zagging them. I know it might be more space than most people have but feel if I can keep them from touching each other, than I have less chance of transmitting some diseases (like early blight) which can be transmitted between plants. Plus giving them more space gets them better air circulation which helps with disease control also. Determinates can be grown closer together (maybe 3′ apart) and dwarf tomato plants even closer. Yes I put either hail netting (offers 10% shade) or shade cloth (30 % shade but no more) but it is to protect them from hail storms more than to actually offer shade but I feel they can benefit from a LITTLE shade because of our high UV light. But they can be fine in full sun (or a little shade is ok) and in fact need 6-8 hrs of sunlight a day. Heavy shade=less tomatoes. More sun=more tomatoes. For you, I would space 2 of them in your 4 x 4 bed apart for indeterminates and for determinates, put one in each corner as you currently do since space is a premium for you. Perhaps you can grow other crops in the space between the maters. Last year was great for me but the year before sucked for tomatoes. In hind site, I feel they didn’t get enough water or fertilizer as you mentioned. This past season I watered and fertilized more. BUT the best thing you can do is keep improving your soil as that is key in my mind for getting any great crop. I add compost every year-about 2 inches to each bed to enrich the soil and lightly turn it in-no deep digging it in as that disturbs the micro-organisms in the soil. I use fish fertilizer and seaweed fertilizer monthly. Everything organic…
Thanks so much for replying!
Wow, rebar cages! Now that’s hard core 🙂
Thank you for the advice. I have narrowed my list to 17 varieties of ‘maters – all but one are indeterminate – and so I’m going to either prune done the list or borrow some space somehow! I’m tempted to try growing some in big, deep 20 gallon containers but the other veggies haven’t enjoyed that life much…
The cages are not made out of actual rebar but rather out of the concrete reinforcement wire for when people work with rebar for concrete. Yes, that would be overkill! I’ll have to fix the post to emphasis this. Thanks for pointing it out!
Jannine, I am building some 8’x4’x10″ raised beds, so I need 27 sq ft of soil. Do you have a recipe of organic ingredients and proportions that you recommend? Also, what do you consider to be the optimal distance between beds? Thanks.
I originally used native soil and composted horse manure and tilled them together. I would not recommend that now! I had problems with that much composted horse manure as there was not enough soil to hold the water-it would run right thru, draining too fast=so the next year I got some topsoil (but I don’t remember where). Nowadays I suggest people get the soil from Paynes Soil Yard for raised beds. Tell them it will be for raised beds-they make a mix for it and give the size of your beds and how many beds you will have and they can figure out how much of their soil you’ll need. ONE CUBIC YARD is 3 feet x 3 feet x 3 feet or 27 cubic feet It has everything in it and it can be delivered. Add compost-about 2 inches and lightly turn it in the top. That would be a good start and then you can add compost every year and other amendments as needed.
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Thanks, Jannine! I meant to say cu. ft., not sq. ft.
I donât know whether you are a Facebook user, but my doctor recently started a FB page âVeggie Gardening in Northern New Mexico.â If you are on FB take a look at it. I posted your reply with attribution and a recommendation that people check out giantveggirgardener.com. Much obliged.