16 www. ReadMPM. com | www.MountPl easantMagaz i ne. com | www. VOICE forMP. com BY PAMELA JOUAN Unearthed Starting aVegetable Garden V ictory gardens became popular during World War II to combat food shortages, and the pandemic has brought them back into popularity, encouraging vegetable plots to battle boredom. But before you buy a nursery’s worth of seeds and starter plants, do you know what you should or could grow in your garden? Approach an outdoor space as you would any room of your home. You would test a sample of paint on the walls to see how it looks before covering an entire room, so start with a manageable plot of land, and experiment with produce that is simple to maintain. “It’s easy to get overwhelmed with too large of an area,” said Abide-A-While perennials manager Tammy Berryman. “Containers or a 4x6 plot are both good places to start.” As a general rule, work with an area that is easy to get to from all sides — no more than three to four feet wide. Location is key when you are growing anything. Survey your garden over the span of a sunny day and pick a spot that gets five to six hours of direct sunlight to maximize the amount of food your garden will produce. Wind protection should be a factor, as well as access to a nearby water source, said Berryman. But is our sandy coastal soil up to the job? For a small fee, you can find out from the Clemson University Extension Agency. Pick up sample bags Abi de -A-Wh i l e Perenn i a l s Manager Tammy Ber r yman sugges t s s tar t i ng sma l l to avo i d overwhe lm.