Crop Rotation, grow your own vegetables
Growing your own vegetables is only possible with a good plan. Certain crops are closely related to each other, they belong to the same family. Because there are many diseases and pests per family, it’s necessary to alternate, also known as crop rotation. Rules for crop rotation are even mandatory for certain crops. Keep in mind don’t grow the same crop on the same piece of land no more than once every 3 years. Certain diseases even occur in several families. It is more sensible to maintain more extensive crop cultivation, once every 6 or 7 years.
Permanent or remaining crops
If you have reserved a piece in your vegetable garden for a greenhouse and trees and shrubs, this does not take part in the crop rotation, as well as perennial crops such as asparagus and artichoke. Strawberry is also permenant, but you could give it a place in the crop cultivation, if you want to change the strawberry after two years, for example. For a perennial crop, keep a longer period before you return to the same piece of land.
Layout of your garden
On the basis of most crops that are grown and the area they occupy in the average vegetable garden, we come to six main groups. See schematically above. Within these main groups we have grouped a number of families. But if you want to do it right, you have to take the families as a basis. Below an overview of the families within the main groups. If you grow fewer main groups or families, the crop cultivation can also be shorter than 6 years.
Determine which vegetables you want to grow and put the bags with seed and planting material together per family. Then put the families together based on the main groups. Then consider how much area of your garden you want to use for which crop. If you only grow a few important crops, you can return more frequently to the same piece of land.
Less known is the combined cultivation. In combination cultivation, you also keep an eye on which crops are best placed next to each other. A crop can be less attractive for a disease or plague caused by a neighboring crop. When you do this intense, there may be a considerable variety of strips in your garden. More about good neighbours you can find in this webshop under protection.