Saturday, May 19, 2012
Book Review: Square Foot Gardening by Mel Bartholomew
Square Foot Gardening by Mel Bartholomew is, as the name implies, a book about gardening in smaller bits of land for greater efficiency, yield and ease of care. In the images you see shown, those are 4 foot plots divided by boards for a walkway, with 4 one foot square plots within each one.
The book talks a lot about general gardening, and specifically about how to train vine crops to grow vertically, and how many of each type of plant can be grown per one foot square.
I started reading up a bit as we planned our new, enclosed, raised garden space. If you missed the post about that project, which is ongoing and updated from time to time, check it out. Specifically, I read about Ruth Stout's methods, Square Foot Gardening, and Lasagna Gardening. I think we incorporated a bit of each in this space.
Mel Bartholomew is a dedicated gardener. Much more dedicated than I am. I have to strike a balance between what he calls easy and what I call easy. What I DID appreciate and learn a lot from was how to go about creating a square foot garden, and how many of each thing will fit in a single square foot. As he states, it's way easier to focus on a single square foot at a time vs long rows where one has a tendency to over plant. Since I don't like to thin seedlings, his method of being brave enough to only plant a single seed in each spot you've designated...it will save money on seed, AND on thinning later.
Here's Mel himself to give you an overview: