10 pieces of advice for vegetable gardening from the guy who wrote the book on it — literally

Photo provided by Matt MattusMatt Mattus didn’t want to write just another gardening book. His “Mastering the Art of Vegetable Gardening” includes beautiful photographs and ideas to help gardeners of all experience levels

“Mastering the Art of Vegetable Gardening” is one part coffee table book and two parts indispensable gardening guide. The hardbound book is more like an elegant cookbook instead of another how-to for growing vegetables.

That’s exactly what author Matt Mattus had in mind when he decided to write his first book.

“As an extraordinary plant geek, I wanted something that would meet all the requirements I wanted out of a book. I wanted it to be a beautiful object, I wanted it to feel important — and by that I mean it should have information in it that was new so it wouldn’t sit on a shelf like so many other gardening books.”

What he didn’t want to write was a book about hacks and shortcuts like the gardening information available today on social media. The visual designer, artist and horticulturist focuses on quality and creativity. He tested every technique he recommends in his book, and he shot every gorgeous image.

Mattus lives and gardens on a plot of land in Worcester, Mass., where he grows more than 200 varieties of vegetables and herbs. As a dedicated plantsman, he understands that vegetable gardens have evolved over time. Gardeners aren’t growing Victory Gardens like in the past and they’re not raising a garden to save money like in the 1970s, he said.

Today’s vegetable gardeners typically have a few raised beds in the yard where they want to grow fresh organic vegetables. They use their gardens as a way to get outdoors and to de-stress.

While writing “Mastering the Art of Vegetable Gardening” (Cool Springs Press, 2019), Mattus made a number of valuable discoveries. Here are his top 10 ideas to help gardeners of all levels get more from their vegetable growing experience:

1. Shop for quality and buy the best seed you can. Be it heirloom, open-pollinated or new hybrid seed, quality usually means the seed costs a bit more. The new, disease-resistant hybrids have been bred for improved characteristics and can be the best seed to grow.

2. Use the vegetable garden like a supermarket. Plant what you typically buy at the store, but try to grow the extraordinary vegetable varieties that aren’t available, like gourmet varieties of parsley, squash, carrots and artichokes. “Celtuce” is

Source:: The Denver Post – Lifestyle


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