Do you want to run a gardening business?
Gardening is a relaxing and profitable hobby. Many people think they do not have the room to start a gardening business. You might be very happy when you see how little space you need.
Why we choose the Mittledier method of gardening
For my Vegetable, Berry, Herb and Flower business I have chosen to use the cost- effective, scientific gardening technique called the Mittleider Method.
At the request of Dr. Jacob Mittleider his “Mittleider method” is now being promoted by the Food For Everyone Foundation. This Non-Profit foundation is now carrying on Dr. Mittleider’s work around the world.We not only use the Foundation sustainable gardening method ourselves, but we also highly support the work that they do.
The information on this page is taken in part from the Foundation’s excellent digital gardening training material. Jim Kennard, President of the Foundation, is working in conjunction with us to create this Squidoo lens.
Key benefits of the Mittleider method.
1. You maximize your yields (5-10 times of a traditional garden) and uses half the space.
2. Easy weeding and harvesting of your garden crops.
3. Uses half the water of a traditional gardening method
4. Totally natural – no pesticides used
5. Our Non-Profit Foundation is carrying out the method world-wide
6. No animal waste bonemeal, blodd or byproducts are used.
The climate in which you live will determine what you plant,when you plant and when you harvest your fruits, vegetables and berries. We will be starting a majority of our plants indoors approximately 6-8 weeks before our last spring frost date.
By starting our plants early we should be able not only to increase our yields but also be first to market in our area.
Growing area size.
How much space do you need?
One of the keys to a successful gardening business is to grow at a manageable level. If you are prepared to follow the directions for the Mittleider Method 100%, then dive right in. If you tend to try short cuts, then perhaps you should start with a smaller garden. A good idea is to try a side-by-side comparison with two smaller areas. Try one small area with your favorite foods using the Mittleider method, the other using your version of gardening.
Why do I suggest this? Because of experience. Last year I did exactly that and was amazed at the difference in yields. Your garden is going to help feed you and provide for you financially. You must take this seriously as a business. By visually seeing the difference in yields you will have a clear and accurate idea of what you can grow per foot per year.
This year using the Mittleider method has given me the confidence to start a separate herb and flower business. I am currently growing in a thirty long by twenty foot wide area. Next year I plan to double that area.My Grow Beds are eighteen inches wide by thirteen feet long. There is 3.5 feet between rows and 5 feet extra space at the end of each row.
Proper Sunlight levels is important to success.
Whenever possible, you want southern exposure. This simply means that you want your beds to run north and south versus east and west. Try to make sure your beds are in an open area with no shade. Do a test and see how many trees block the sun between 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. this is the hottest part of the day. Try to make sure you are in direct sunlight – but do not go crazy cutting trees down.
Starting your seedling indoors the right way
Used with permission of the Food for Everyone Foundation
Starting seedlings in a protected environment is a great way to extend your growing season – if you do it right. Let’s review the steps required to assure your highest chance for success since it can mean that you’re eating out of your garden 6-8 weeks earlier than your neighbors!
1) The planting medium must be “sterile”, meaning it has never been used for growing things before. Use a mixture of sawdust, peat moss, perlite, vermiculite, and sand in any combination you like, but with sand at 25% to 35% by volume. All of these ingredients are not necessary even straight sawdust can be used with sand, if necessary, but three ingredients work very well.
2) In America you can buy inexpensive plastic trays or flats that measure 11″ X 20″ in size. In many other locations around the world people make their own flats, and we recommend 18″ X 18″ X 3″ deep outside dimensions.
For each 11″ X 20″ plastic tray, add one ounce or 2 level tablespoons of Pre-Plant Mix and thoroughly mix with the planting medium. Use ½ again as much if you are using 18″ X 18″ trays. For all fertilizer formulas, look under Fertilizers in the Learn section of the website at www.foodforeveryone.org, or in all of Dr. Mittleider’s vegetable gardening books.
3) Using a 1″ X 2″ board or a ¾” PVC pipe 19″-long, make 6 shallow furrows in the tray.Plant seeds evenly spaced in the furrows, with no more than 600-800 seeds per tray. Cover with 1/8″-1/4″ of planting medium.
4) Cover the tray with lightweight burlap or cheesecloth and water gently with plain water.Never use fertilizer on un-sprouted seed! Water often and heavy enough to keep the soil moist, but not soaking wet.
5) Place in a dark location with soil temperatures of 70 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit.A thermostatically controlled seed germination pad can be important to help maintain this temperature in a cool basement or garage.Warmer temperatures will help your plants sprout more quickly, so if you’re in a hurry use a temperature near 80 degrees.
6) At the first signs of plants emerging from the soil, water with the Constant Feed Solution, consisting of 1 ounce Weekly Feed Mix dissolved in 3 gallons of water, then remove the covering, and place the tray under maximum light.
Remember to give your plants full light as soon as you first see any sprouts showing above the soil surface.Any delay at all and the plants will develop long, skinny, weak stems as they search for that all-important light.