Space to Plant Your Garden -- Gardening Series

This is our 4th post in our Vegetable Garden Planning blog series.

It's now time to think about the space needed to grow our seeds and seedlings.  Each plant needs their own space to grow.  You will want to think about  how deep their roots grow into the soil and how wide the plant will grow.  It is very important to plant your seeds in the ground in a way that gives them the right amount of space.  If they do not have the right amount of space they will be unhealthy and may not produce any food.  The back of the package will usually tell you exactly how to plant seeds and how much space they will need.  The package tells you how many inches deep to plant and how much space to leave between seeds.  If you are planting in containers or flower pots you will want to make sure you pick a container that is the right size for the plant.  You can find detailed information for each plant including its space, temperature and nutrient needs on the Grow It, Eat It website.

      Understanding Seed Package Space Requirements

The back of a cauliflower seed package
 What does the terms on the back of the seed package mean?   

  • Planting depth: How deep to plant the seed.  On the above package is 1/2" which means to plant it half an inch deep.
  • Seed spacing:  This is how far you need to plant it away from other seeds.  Sometimes this tells you how many seeds fit into a pot.  Sometimes it might say 6" -- this would mean that each seed should be at least 6 inches away from another seed.
  • Spacing after transplanting: This refers to how much space the baby plant, or seedling, will need.  This is only needed if you plant seeds indoors that you will later plant outside (transplant).  The example shows that cauliflower plants need to be planted 18 inches (1& 1/2 feet) away from each other.
  • Spacing between rows:  This is really for farmers or those with big gardens.  It refers to how big the path needs to be between rows of certain crops.
  • Days until harvest:  This tells you when you will be able to eat your food.  YUMMY!

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© Eat Smart, Be Fit Maryland!Maira Gall