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How to Plant a Low-Maintenance Garden

Don’t have the greenest thumb? Plant a garden, anyway, with these easy to follow tips.

Photo: C.P.Storm via Flickr

Want a garden but never had one before? Read on for a few low-maintenance but high-yielding recommendations to get you started. Even better? Everything mentioned can be purchased at a local garden supply store.

Get ready to get dirty: The only way to grow a green thumb is to get your hands in the dirt.

Use organic, all-natural compost: Compost is rich in nutrients and inviting to earthworms, which can help keep your garden going. Avoid chemicals in your soil and on your plants.

For a garden that will feed you throughout the season, plant herbs and vegetables that are low-maintenance and high-yielding. Here are a few favorites:

Rainbow Swiss chard: This delicious and great-looking vegetable is inexpensive. You can just cut what you need at mealtime and then the plant grows back quickly. Swiss chard is great in soups or sauteed as a side dish.

Oregano and basil: These are two of the most versatile herbs, great for salads, pasta dishes and sauces. Like Swiss chard, you can take what you need and the plants will keep growing back. The key: Don’t let these plants flower. Once they do flower, they begin to die. If you see a bud sprout on the plant, pick it off. It actually makes a nice addition to salads.

Cherry tomato varieties: They are the easiest tomatoes to grow. Plus, cherry tomatoes have incredibly high yields and a variety of uses. They will typically continue to bear fruit until winter frost hits.

Green pole beans: You can plants these as seeds on a trellis and they’ll flourish. They are high-yielding and always delicious.

Nestpert: Chef Michael Ayoub of Fornino Park Slope and Fornino Williamsburg. Michael uses the plants and herbs from his gardens at home to supplement produce at both restaurants.

-- The Nest Editors

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