Hawaii is the perfect place to bring your homegrown food to your family’s table.
With so many elevations and diverse climate options, starting a home gardening in Hawaii is a matter of learning what grows best as well as where you decide to plant.
Having said that, in this article, we are going to enlighten you on the best way to start your home gardening depending on the type that suits your preference, especially if you’re residing in Hawaii or planning to relocate.
Let’s get started…
How Do I Start Home Gardening In Hawaii?
Home gardening has to do with the act of turning space or small land into a productive area for the family.
In this space, many agricultural products are being planted for personal consumption as well as for creating aesthetic diversity for birds and insects with attractive flower beds.
To start home gardening, there is a need for you to have a standard knowledge of gardening, ongoing nurturing of plants, maintenance skills, and consistent improvement.
There are three home gardening that you can practice in Hawaii.
- Backyard Home Gardening
- Container Home Gardening
- Indoor Home Gardening
Let’s look at how you can start any of the home gardening as a beginner.
How To Start A Backyard Home Garden In Hawaii
- Pick The Right Location
The first thing that you should do when starting any form of home gardening is to look out for the right location that is suitable for planting.
Try and pick a particular spot where you can stay a whole day under that sun.
This is because for your plants to germinate, they will need the day of the sun, and also while planting those crops, you will need to stand under the sun which if it is too hot might damage your skin.
As a specialist in this field, I will highly recommend that you look out for the placement of the garden on a gentle slope to the South, southeast, or southwest.
That’s because faster vegetable growth can be achieved by planting to the South instead of the North side of the building.
They will benefit from more heat as well as enough wind for healthy growth.
- Look Out For Good Soil
Back in my school days, my agricultural lecturer would always say that not all soils are good for agriculture.
The best-recommended soil was the loamy soil.
With this, you should know that it is important that you must have gotten the right spot to start your planting.
You must also check out the type of soil that it has.
Wild soils are said to lack organic matter due to their nature.
So whatever soil you choose to use, you must ensure that it has organic matter compositions.
Having this, will help to improve the structure of the soil so that water can permeate the soil, increase the amount of air(oxygen) in order for it to get to roots as well as provide the soil with the essential nutrients needed for its healthy germination.
Apply 2 inches of an organic matter supplement around the garden and dig it deep into the soil using a spade. Avoid mixing it with sandy or clay soil since it will cause the soil to be hard.
- Always Water Your Backyard Home Garden
Just as humans can’t do without water so also can plants not do without a daily supply of water.
Water is a necessary supplement that every plant needs to be able to grow healthy.
So it is necessary that you must make provision for adequate water supply for the garden irrespective of wherever it is located with the right equipment for watering plants.
It is important to note that growing plants in sandy soil will demand a high amount of water supply compared to clay soil.
As you are watering, you may need to regularly leach your garden, this is done to remove harmful elements that might be contained in the water which might be harmful to the plants.
When most of the vegetables have matured, then you are expected to increase the amount of water supply each week.
- Add Fertilizers To The Plants
Most times, some soil isn’t nutritious enough to grow plants on its own.
That’s why Fertilizers were introduced to the soil.
But even as good as it sounds, it is important that you pay close attention to the amount of fertilizer that you add to your crops.
This is done to avoid crops from suffering from nutrient deficiency and losing their potential.
So before you add fertilizer to your crops, you should try and run a soil test. Doing so will aid you to know the amount of fertilizer that you need to supplement the soil nutrients.
Also, do well to follow the instructions on the pack of fertilizer on how best to get the most out of it.
Read Also: What Is 19-19-19 Fertilizer Good For?
- Mulch Your Garden When Necessary
Mulching your garden is very beneficial because it decomposes when being put under while adding organic matter to the soil and preventing water loss, erosion, and weed growth.
With this, you can see that it is a dispensable part when grooming your garden.
Organic mulches should be applied in late spring or early summer to warm the soil sufficiently for plant growth.
It is recommended that you remove it after the growth season.
You can use grass clippings, wood chips, sawdust, peat moss, straw, leaves, great compost, or even newspaper to create these muches.
- Take Good Care Of Your Backyard Garden
The last step is to take adequate care of your garden.
By taking care, we mean making sure that you always cut out the weeds that grow alongside the crops even though weeds are said to be essential to the growth of a plant.
Weeds can cause the vegetables in the garden to suffer from lack of water, nutrients and light.
So, it is important that you use any of these methods such as hand pulling, use of tractors as well as weed-suppressing mulch to uproot the weed in order not to cause harm to the crops.
The use of chemical herbicides aren’t recommended in a vegetable garden if you have one.
Another aspect that you need to be mindful of when taking care of your garden is by applying the necessary fertilizer when it is due.
As a gardener, it is highly recommended that you should pick produce just before it reaches its peak of freshness in order to increase your sales if you are grooming this garden for commercial purposes.
Regular harvesting is also helpful for plants like asparagus, summer squash, cucumbers, and sweet corn.
Read Also: What Is Scrap Gardening And How To Get Started?
How To Start A Container Home Garden
- Select Your Containers
The number of containers that you select as well as the quality of the product that you marked out will determine the size of your container garden.
A small container garden will consist of a couple of potted plants which can be placed on a balcony.
If you are venturing into gardening for commercial purposes or a large scale business, it might utilize up to a hundred containers which can be outdoors or in a greenhouse.
The various containers that are mostly used for this type of gardening are food-grade tanks and totes, 8-inches pots, and large crates.
Regardless of whichever type or size of the container you decide to use, there are some basic factors that require serious consideration.
Firstly, you must ensure that the container is safe for use and doesn’t have any chemical components.
This is because some plant roots can absorb any chemical poison in the container into their bodies which will cause a great loss to you.
So to avoid going through the trauma, try as much as possible to do the needful.
Secondly, for this type of gardening to work, you must make provision for a drainage system.
This is to avoid having lots of water on the root of the plant since there is no channel to extract the water thereby attracting “anaerobic bacteria” at the root of the plant.
Thirdly, it is important that you avoid using rocks or stones as a preventative measure for soil erosion or as an alternative to drainage systems.
Another factor that you must try to consider is the type of soil that you are expected to use for container gardening.
The type of soil that you must use is potting soil.
This is because plants while growing or maturing tend to shoot out their roots to the bottom of the container which not all soil can be flexible for such.
For instance, a clay soil which is known to be a hard soil can’t be used for this method.
Fifthly, it is important that you consider the size of the container that you are proposing to use for any plant as well as its strength, aesthetics, and water resistance.
Most plants will require enough space to be able to germinate well while some can grow irrespective of the size of the container used.
So therefore, by getting the actual size of the container to be used for any plant, it helps to prevent pests and diseases as a result of inadequate drainage of water as well as lack of nutrition.
- Organize Your Containers
The best conditions for container gardening include plentiful sunlight, proximity to a water supply for consistent watering, protection from wind, and portability.
So, it is important that you take time to spot out the area that has the above features because that’s where your container garden will be.
Such a spot will bring about a perfect growing condition for the plants.
Furthermore, the use of containers to grow vegetables seems easier than the help of trellises, trellis systems or having more rooms to grow.
- Pick Good Potting Soil
The quality of the soil that has been used to grow plants or vegetables in containers will determine how best the plants will grow.
For instance, a fine-grained soil is the best soil for this method since it holds on to water and nutrients more than other soils.
You also need to consider the soil to be used in order to determine how fertile it is.
So, it is important that before planting, you should add lime and fertilizer to the soil as well as perlite, peat moss or vermiculite.
A fertilizer combined with these above Including a 20 percent superphosphate 5-10-5 should be mixed in a proportional amounts Inorder to produce a workable solution.
- Start Planting Your Crops
When you have got suitable soil to use, the next thing that should come to your mind afterwards is to start planting your Crops or vegetables.
You can start by planting the seeds in the containers, then water it afterwards.
You can also plant herbs as well as vegetables which are majorly for culinary
Having this, it is important that you choose edible plants that can be consumed if your intention is to grow them for personal use.
While filling the seeds, it shouldn’t be more than 2 inches from the top since the vegetable will mature and will require space in order to expand.
Also, due to the high reproduction rate of vegetables and herbs, I will recommend that you replant them every 3 to 4 weeks in order to ensure a continuous increase in harvest.
- Water Your Containers Plants
No plant can survive without having enough water supply.
That’s to say that the survival of any plant is dependent on that quantity of water supply that it absorbs daily.
So therefore, plants in containers aren’t excluded.
They require enough care and attention to avoid the drying out of their garden beds.
You need to water them always through either use of a hand or a drip irrigation system.
If you decide to use a drip irrigation system, it helps to reduce watering while ensuring a consistent flow.
- Take Care Of Your Containers Home Garden
For anything profitable that you are doing, there is a need to take adequate care of it.
For your container home garden to be a success, you need to take care of the plants.
For instance, vegetables require a maximum of six hours of daily sun to germinate and bloom well while others such as spinach, lettuce and cabbage need less hours of sunlight.
Also, you should ensure that there is a reliable water supply channel for the daily watering of the plants given how container soils usually dry up within a few minutes.
It is not just about watering the plants, you also have to pay close attention to the plants since consistent watering helps to keep the soil at its supposed temperature.
It also helps to wash away the damaged salts that can be harmful to the plant roots.
Furthermore, you should also try examining the soil to know its capability of retaining moisture and nutrients which are beneficial to plant development.
This should be carried out after three to four weeks of feeding your plants with either a liquid or water-soluble fertilizer which has been diluted.
So if you can carry out all these, your starting wouldn’t be much easier and less stressful.
How To Start An Indoor Home Garden
Any edible plant can be successfully grown in an indoor home garden.
All you need to have a proper enlightenment on how best to go about it as well as what you should avoid bearing in mind that this method of gardening is different from the two types which have been mentioned above.
To start an indoor home garden, you just need to have a channel created to allow light (Sun), oxygen as well as quality water supply into the enclosed room.
Also, it requires the use of a container or a greenhouse.
A plant can not grow without enough photosynthetic reactions since indoor gardening requires a combination of natural and artificial light.
The plant needs 12 hours of artificial light apart from the natural sun rays.
When the plant reaches a particular level of maturity, it is expected that the plant should be transferred to a large and more airtight container.
When you are starting the planting, the best type to begin with is the “seedling flats” which will be replaced with a much bigger container when it has germinated.
Root vegetables like carrots and potatoes need a container or a pot of six inches deep while leafy green vegetables or herbs require a shallower container when planting.
Another necessary thing to bear in is the type of soil that you should use in this method.
The best type of soil is the potting soil.
By the use of this soil, it helps to make indoor gardening much easier to operate.
However, to keep your container or pot free from pests and diseases, you need to avoid utilizing soil from the outside.