Vegetables from the home garden are fresher, may have better nutrient values, and are often less costly than those sold in stores. In addition to providing wholesome, low-cost food, vegetable gardening is an interesting hobby, one in which the whole family can take part. Other advantages of gardening are that it provides healthful outdoor exercise, offers productive activity for retired, handicapped, or disabled persons, and is an excellent teaching tool for children.
To get the most out of your garden you should make plans early in the year and follow proper steps during the gardening season. The purpose of this guide is to help you plan and maintain a garden under Illinois growing conditions so that you will have an abundant supply of high-quality vegetables at harvest and (if you freeze, can, or store your vegetables) throughout the year.