This is a journal of my vegetable gardens. Skippy was my first dog and he thought the garden was his, even though I did all the work. Now Suzie and Charley follow in his footsteps. We're located near Boston (USDA zone 6A). I have a community plot, a backyard vegetable garden, fruit trees, berry bushes, chickens, and bees. I use sustainable organic methods and do my best to grow all of my family's vegetables myself.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

row direction

I'm planning to go back to my north-south rows this year, which I have usually done in the past. Last year I tried east-west rows, because I read these get better sun exposure. Not only do I think the longer rows (N-S) look nicer in my garden, I think they grow better. Not that I've done a good study of this - it just seems that way to me. Any other ideas on N-S versus E-W rows?


Anonymous Scott said...

Hello Kathy:
Well it was winter seed order time and I thought I would stop by. No chiles on your list? Just a typo I am sure :-)

Rule #1 always plant rows across grade. For me this is n-s. If there is a difference between sun, the ecliptic and solar energy absorbed for e-w vs. n-s it is probably not as big of a deal as being washed down hill!

Think green chiles.

January 22, 2008 10:03 PM

Blogger carletongardener said...

Hi Scott! Thank for reminding me about the forgotten chiles. Actually I had too many last year and may take a break. But your comment is making me reconsider growing just one nice variety.

You must be a chile grower. Thanks for the row advice. Since I have no grade and a lot less sun than you (lower angle), I think maybe n-s matters more for me.

January 23, 2008 10:22 AM

Anonymous Patrick said...

For some plants, in particular peas, row direction is important and N-S is best. I think this is because the plants tend to reach out in an E-W direction and so find light in the space between the rows.

If you have very tall shade producing plants, and you put them in an N-S direction, they will all shade one another. This is happening with the fruit trees in my new garden. It's good in that is doesn't produce much shade in other parts of my garden, but it means they limit their own growth.

In my case it would have been much better to have them in the north end of the garden running E-W, because there is nothing important beyond my garden there and their shadows would have been cast outside of the garden.

For rows of short plants it doesn't make much difference, but when you plant something tall, it's a good idea to think for a moment where the shadows will lie.

January 23, 2008 12:53 PM

Blogger carletongardener said...

Well my peas definitely grew to the west last year. With the e-w rows, they ended up on top of each other. n-s for the peas this year.

My tomatoes were also in rows e-w and I think they grew much too tall. Especially the plants towards the north side (back) of the plot. I'll run these n-s this year.

Same with the trellised cukes and pole beans.

Sounds like it doesn't matter for my short carrots, lettuce etc...

January 23, 2008 1:39 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Professional greenhouses "always" plant rows north-south to take full advantage of the morning and afternoon sun. North south

give better spread of sun over the beds as it passes over from side to side. As the sun travels from east to west, the

plants aren't shaded by those on either side. But remember, too, that in Southern Hemisphere, the sun always stays in the

Northern sky as it moves east-to-west, so if you put your short plants at the Northern end, they aren't shaded by taller

plants to the south (in southern hemisphere). In winter, the south wall is often solid & insulated (in southern hemisphere).

August 15, 2010 5:03 PM

Blogger kathy said...

Sounds good. Thanks!

August 15, 2010 7:12 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...


May 17, 2014 2:54 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Any one have I dea about good row direction of green chilli

April 25, 2015 1:58 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

My garden rows run north & south. Peas are my tallest vegetable. So, should I plant the peas on the east, west or in the middle of my garden???


April 30, 2015 12:28 PM

Blogger kathy said...

I think the north-south rows only applies if its all one same height crop. If you have a tall crop it is best behind the others - to the north. Can you do half-rows of the tall peas? That's what I did last year. Actually it was more of a pea patch to the north of other crops.

My tallest crops are peas, popcorn, pole beans and tomatoes. I have raised beds that are oriented almost north-south. Actually they more like northeast-southwest. And there is a bit of a slope to the southeast. The best place for me for a tall crop is the top of the slope, to the northwest. But then, I need to rotate the crops, so I move the tall crops around from either edge and the back of beds. Anywhere but the south side.

So many details. But what I'm getting at is that I think where you put a tall crop depends on several factors.

If you have a flat garden, full sun, north-south rows, and you aren't planning in crop rotation from previous years, and you don't want to do partial rows and plant them at the north, then I'd put the peas at the west. That way, all your lower plants will get good morning sun, which I think is more important than afternoon son.

May 08, 2015 2:22 PM


Post a Comment

<< Home

your ad here

garden garden garden garden garden garden garden garden garden garden