4-H gardening around Michigan

Michigan’s gardening season is upon us and 4-H kids around the state have been busy getting ready for gardening too.

Garden
Photo by Dixie Sandborn, MSU Extension

Michigan’s gardening season is upon us and as we dream of sweet tomatoes right off the vine and endless fragrance and color from our favorite flowers, 4-H kids around the state have been busy getting ready for gardening, too. From Wayne County to Gogebic County and many counties in between, kids around Michigan are sharing their gardening tips. In the following short videos, you will see kids from all over the state and how they are getting ready to garden around Michigan.

Join these 4-H’ers while traveling virtually throughout the state as they show and teach us about their gardening projects around Michigan. With these tips and tricks, these kids will help us to get your gardening season off to a great start.

Starting with the soil, if you are planning to put a garden in a new location it is important to make sure the area will drain. There is nothing worse than having all your hard work go fruitless in soggy soil. Check out how you can do a perk test to see how well your soil drains. Perk tests can be done in your present or future garden site to see how fast your soil drains. Soil that drains well but also holds enough moisture at the same time is the right balance for a healthy garden.

When it is too cold for seeds to be planted directly in the garden, you can get a head start by gluing seeds on paper towels. This is a great way to save seeds as well as have a ready to go planting plan. Once the soil warms up, these paper towel seed mats can be sown directly in the garden.

Another idea that many of us do at home is starting seeds indoors. In this video, these smart and thrifty kids are starting seeds in recycling containers.

Here is a great idea from a 4-H’er in the Upper Peninsula. Using the age-old practice of saving seeds and storing them for the next gardening season is fun and thrifty. Saving seeds was once a necessity for gardening and now is more of a hobby. If you do not have any seeds saved from last year, think about the seeds you would like to save for next year’s garden.

Whether you have saved your own seeds or purchased seeds from a garden center, it is important to keep track of the seeds and plants you are planting in your garden and flower beds. Keeping a garden journal is an important step in keeping your garden notes together. You can be creative while noting special features of the plants you grow. This is important when planning your future gardens.

Don’t forget to label the seeds you sow directly into your garden. There are many creative ways to mark your rows, but here is a great idea for inexpensive row markers with supplies you have on hand.

Composting is an important part of gardening. Vermiculture is a fancy word for using worms to help you compost your kitchen scraps to speed up your composting. This is a simple worm box you can build to house some of the best recyclers around. Worms eat your garbage and create castings, also known as worm poop. These castings make a great natural fertilizer for your garden as well as your indoor or outdoor potted plants. If your worm box gets too crowded with lots of new baby worms, move them to your garden. They do great stuff in your garden too.

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