Vegetable gardening, as usually defined, means the culture of vegetables for table use. Under this head are also included certain plants which botanically are fruits, but are considered horticulturally as vegetables. Among these are watermelons, muskmelons, and tomatoes.
Vegetable growing may be grouped under some four or five divisions, about as follows: Kitchen or Home Gardening, Market Gardening, Trucking, and Greenhouse Culture or Vegetable Forcing.
Market Gardening—By market gardening we usually mean the growing of vegetables for commercial purposes. For success in market gardening or trucking, a good market, large yields per acre, vegetables of good quality and appearance, well packed, and in the proper season, usually the earlier the better, are essentials for success. This, of course, means good land and good management on the part of the grower. Celery, radishes, onions, etc., are usually regarded as market crops. The vicinity of large cities offers splendid opportunities for market gardening.
Trucking—Trucking differs from market gardening mainly in that it is carried on on a much larger scale, more as field crops. Cabbage, tomatoes, sweet corn, etc., are crops commonly grown as truck crops.
Vegetable Forcing—Vegetable forcing is carried on in cold frames, hotbeds, and greenhouses, and has become one of the important branches of vegetable growing, especially in the vicinity of large cities. Lettuce, radishes, tomatoes, and cucumbers are the crops commonly grown.
Kitchen or Home Vegetable Gardening—By the term “kitchen garden” is meant the large or small tract of land needed to grow vegetables for home use. This should be one of the most profitable parts of the farm, if well taken care of. Large returns may also be obtained from city lot gardens of small area, if a careful succession of crops is followed.