With a small garden, you can grow your own herbs and food, just in times when it is not recommended to leave your home. 

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Interaction with the earth has a very important and vital benefit: it promotes mental health well-being. A report in the Mental Health Journal explains that gardening is capable of reducing stress and improving mood. It can also combat symptoms of depression and anxiety. 

Practical conversed with a farmer, teacher and one of the founders “From garden to root”, an enterprise specialized in the cultivation of urban vegetables. They are based on the concept of food sovereignty, which is based on the right of every community to have clean, healthy and ecologically produced and healthy food.

Here are some recommendations for everyone who wants to venture into this world. 

1. Visualize your space

If you are a beginner, the first thing you have to take into account is space. "Have a comfortable place to work where you can see all the plants you want and the sense of what you are going to grow," explains expert.

2. Sunlight

For most vegetables to grow, the ideal is to have a good six hours of sun rays. "The idea is to take benefit of the greater number of light hours during the day: the better the light, the greater the growth of the plants," says the agronomist.

3. Water

Once you identify what you want to plant, you should consider that not all plants require the same amount of water nor can they be watered the same way.

Some plants only need to have their roots watered, while others need to be watered as well.

4. Soil

"The fertilizer and the substrate is key", explains the specialist, since if the soil is not rich "you are not going to have a good result and that can lead to demotivation".

In the event that you have an unused piece of land, you must chop and unpack. The next step is to fertilize and nurture before planting. “It is necessary to think of the soil as a living being and not see agriculture as a kind of mining, where one extracts minerals. You also have to return them. ” You can also use grow bags to plant

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5. Seeds or sprouts?

"It is better to start with the seeds since this way you can see the whole process that involves the growth and development and harvest of a plant or vegetable," says garden expert, adding that "this must be seen in a cyclical way: the seed it is the beginning and the end of this process ”.

Outbreaks involve more root knowledge. It is a good second level in case you have already cultivated your first harvest.

6. What do you grow annually?

If you are starting the idea is to prioritize fast cycle crops such as: lettuce, chard, spinach. "Even the latter when you cultivate it after three days may be germinating and in less than a month -or a full one- it may already be harvesting the first leaves," explains Garden Expert.

“Radishes are also the fastest and easiest. Coriander, beets and carrots too ”.

7. What can be grown in the fall?

"In autumn crops appear and others disappear", explains the agronomist but exclusively for this season -in addition to annual crops- you can add "beans, peas, garlic, cabbage, cauliflower, kale and the entire family of brassicas".

8. If I have an apartment ... Are the pots or drawers better?

It all depends on the spaces. "If you have a large department and you can have drawers, it's great," explains the specialist, since while "more space for development is better and you have less probability of root death (root suffocation)".

In the case of a small apartment, vertical gardens are suggested, as it is a good space-saving alternative as well as helping with noise reduction from the street into the space.

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