This time of year, most gardeners we know are doing at least a little bit of garden planning. We turned to our Facebook community and asked how you plan your own garden every year, and you gave us some great ideas! As you’ll see below, garden planning is like creating art: Whether you account for each square inch, just wing it, or something in between, you all have wonderfully different techniques for achieving your bountiful masterpieces. (Looking for even more garden planning ideas? Come on over to our planting plans page for lots of creative step-by-step plans.)

“We’re just old-fashioned farmer-gardeners. Our garden is huge and designed for ease of production instead of beauty. We put the things we pick most often (like tomatoes and cucumbers) closest, and the things that we’ll pick once (dried beans, potatoes, carrots) farther away. We also put things close that come in early (peas and beets) so we can replant a late crop of something when they are finished. It’s all about years of experience, logic, and ease for us.” – Betty J. Newman

I started with a few varieties that I love, cherry tomatoes, chili peppers, peas, and squash. Now I am adding more varieties such as potatoes, cucumbers, and container corn. I researched each fruit/veggie on the Old Farmer’s Almanac and printed the corresponding page and put together my own reference book.” – Yvonne Coates

“We have raised beds, I have them drawn on graph paper.Saved the file and I can use my tablet to plan out, and I have all the previous years saved. I use a companion planting book to help with placement.” – Victoria Moore

Garden Planning: cherry tomatoes

I base what I’m planting on the use of my canned goods consumed from the past year, but I always have tomatoes. I also map out my space so I know exactly how much room I have and where everything is going.” – Becky Fry-Adams

“I have no plan! I buy what I like and plant it where I have room. Kind of helter skelter. I do try to rotate my veggies from year to year though.” – Connie Avilas

I make it kid friendly. We just started a container garden so I chose fruits and veggies that I know our kids love and that will be pretty easy for them to maintain. My son asks every morning if we can check on the garden and he has his own watering can and gardening tools. Great outdoor activity and a way to teach responsibility. We can’t wait for our fruits and veggies to go from our garden to our table.” – Meghann Pracanica

As a beginner gardener, I looked at what we buy at the store and researched how easy it would be to grow myself. I started with container gardening last year and am expanding to square foot gardening this year.” – Angela Behnk McLaughlin

Garden Planning: girl with watering can

“I have my little spot in the backyard. I plant things I use the most, like jalapeño, bell peppers, cilantro, green onions, celery, tomatoes, lettuce.” – Ruth Alarcon

“I don’t plan anything! I just go where my heart leads me in my garden and it turns out beautiful every time, in my eyes at least!” – Denise Huda

I have my basic ‘menu’ of ‘must-haves’… tomatoes, peppers, onions, taters, squash, zucchini, peas and green beans. And the herb garden, with the basics and whatever exotics I want to experiment with.” – C.R. Thomas

I use square foot gardening techniques along with companion plant positioning for optimal yield. I choose which plant varieties and how much produce I’d like to eat/can, and estimate the number of plants needed. Then, I sketch out placement, referring to past gardening plans and notes, ensuring crop rotation. I pick Bonnie Plants, as they have provided healthy, predictable, and tasty produce in my garden for years.” – Ken Casey

There is really not a lot of planning when it comes to our garden. I plant the usual every year. Tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, squash, pumpkins, and corn.” – Jennifer White

“GRAPH PAPER! My gardens always start out with a sheet of graph paper, downloaded from the Internet.” – Perry Bublitz

Garden Planning: well-planned rows

Now that you’ve seen all of these inspired garden planning ideas from fellow gardeners, what will your strategy be? Come tell us on our Facebook page!