Before starting a garden, it’s important to consider the soil. If you live in an urban area, it’s a good idea to test the soil to determine its chemical and mineral composition. It’s also wise to consider the aspect of your garden, which refers to the direction of the garden. This can affect how much light gets to the area.
Plant native plants
When choosing which plants to plant in your garden, consider the natural characteristics of the area. Native plants can blend in with the natural look of the area and look less crowded and unkempt. They are also a good choice for HOA covenants and neighborhood restrictions. While native plants may not be the most beautiful, they are important to the ecosystem, and can provide homes for important insects and animals.
For example, the ornamental native grasses and flowers of the prairie can be used in sunny garden borders. Plants like goldenrods and false indigo provide color in early summer and are attractive to many migratory birds. In addition, viburnums are interesting foliage shrubs with excellent floral displays in late spring and fall. They thrive in moderate to moist garden soils and can tolerate part shade or sun.
Native plants also require less water and care, which means they are better for the environment. They can reduce your carbon footprint and reduce your water use. Native plants also provide habitat for wildlife and reduce the need for fertilizers and other garden chemicals.
Plan your garden ahead of time
Planning your garden ahead of time is a great way to ensure that you have everything you need when you are ready to plant it. Start by creating a list of crops you’d like to grow. Think about what you enjoy eating and what you want to grow more of in the winter. Then, add to the list other crops that you’d like to grow.
The more you plan ahead of time, the more successful your garden will be. Having a plan will help you maximize space in your garden and minimize waste. Knowing what crops you’ll grow will help you choose the right amount of plants and the right time to harvest them. In addition, it will make your work as a gardener easier.
When planning your garden, picture the garden you want it to be when it is full and mature. This way, you can plan for the next year when your plants will be at their peak.
Keep track of planting dates
Keeping a calendar of your seed, flower, and fruit planting dates is a great way to see the progress of your garden plants in real time. This is important because gardening involves dealing with changing weather patterns. The amount of sunshine, rain, and wind will influence the growth and health of your plants. Knowing the climate of your garden beforehand will help you plan your plantings accordingly.
Different plants have different planting dates, depending on your growing zone and the time of year. Once you know these dates, you can plan when to sow your seeds and when to plant them out. You can also keep a record of when you need to deal with pests or diseases. For example, if you’ve noticed Japanese beetles in your garden, you can write down the date they were detected and any specific conditions.
Another way to keep track of your gardening schedule is to use a garden planner. These planners include a calendar and a section for notes. You can use this to keep track of planting dates and other important details. You can also keep your notes in a binder or a notebook.
Watering plants is an important part of caring for them. A dry soil can cause fungi to form. Therefore, it is essential to water your plants before the heat of the day sets in. You should also make sure to water your plants during the early morning to prevent evaporation. It is also important to water your plants in the early evening to prevent fungal pathogens from growing on them.
When watering your garden, be careful not to water only the foliage or flowers. This can result in wilting and dying plants. To avoid this, check the soil and water only the plants that need it. Also, avoid getting the roots of your plants wet. This is especially important for young plants and those in hot climates.
Depending on the type of plant, the amount of water needed varies. It also depends on the climate and soil type. For example, plants in sandy soil need more water than those in clay soil. You should also check the maturity of the plant to know how much water it needs. In general, it’s better to water plants in the early morning hours, late afternoon, and at night. You can use watering cans when watering your plants to avoid wetting their leaves.
Weeds can be a major problem for your garden, as they steal water and nutrients from your desirable plants. They can also spread rapidly and can sprout even from a few seeds. It may take days or weeks for a weed to germinate, so it’s important to control them as quickly as possible. Also, weeds with deep roots can resprout if cut down.
The easiest way to control weeds is to simply pluck them as they grow. Another option is to use chopping and dropping to prevent weeds from flowering. This prevents the seeds from germinating, and will keep the seed bank low. In addition, you can use a grass catcher to harvest weeds that are flowering.
Another method to control weeds when gardening is to reduce the spacing between plants. Weeds thrive in open areas, so make sure that you plant plants as close together as possible to minimize the open spaces. You can also buy young plants from local nurseries, but be aware that they may introduce new weeds. These seeds can germinate even in a nursery environment, so it’s important to check the plants before you transplant them to the garden.
Another method of controlling weeds is through cultural controls. This involves planting cover crops and applying synthetic or organic mulch. These methods are safe to use and will help you keep weeds out of your garden.
Fertilizing plants is an important part of growing your own vegetables and flowers. Ideally, you should fertilize your plants every two weeks or so during active growth. During this time, they will need the most support from you. You should also check your plants for pests and keep weeds out of the way.
When choosing fertilizers, remember that the right one for your plant will depend on the kind of soil. Use fertilizers that are diluted to half strength before you mix them with the soil. This will help prevent over-fertilization. Moreover, it is important to remember that plants absorb nutrients more from the foliage than the roots. Aside from the nutrient content of soil, fertilizers also have micronutrients, which are essential for the growth of plants.
Different plants require different types of nutrients and may require different amounts of each. For instance, some plants require higher amounts of nitrogen than others. In such cases, you can choose a fertilizer with a 20-5-5 composition.
Labeling your plants is one of the most important gardening tips and advices. There are many ways of doing so, including by using plastic items, such as takeaway containers or empty ice cream tubs. You can also use a plastic twist-tie or a piece of garden string to secure the tag.
Tags can include a variety of information, including hardiness zones and species of plants. They can also contain detailed information about wildlife and plant interactions. For instance, you can find information on which plants attract pollinators. A bee symbol may appear on the tag to indicate the plant is pollinator-friendly. Other tags can tell you whether the plant is deer or rabbit-resistant. Some even have instructions on how to care for the plant.
Labels are essential for transferring seedlings to other locations. Different plants have different requirements, and it is important to place them in the right spot. Labeling your plants will help you ensure that you have the best harvests. However, it can be time-consuming to drive to the nursery to purchase labels for each plant. Fortunately, you can make your own plant tags out of plastic containers or bottles.