Gardening is a great activity to get you outdoors while enabling you to be in charge of something that provides so many benefits. If you’ve always wondered how to get started, you can take advantage of owning a garden with just a few simple steps.
Some common problems faced when starting a garden are based on issues relating to location and space. The problem may be that the area is too little or too large, which only creates frustration in the early stages, and the thoughts of what to do can be a bit overwhelming. Does this sound familiar? Well, let me help you ease some of that worry with the following guide that will provide you with things you need to know before starting a garden of your own. So keep reading!
1) Pick A Suitable Spot
Almost all flowers and vegetables require 6-8 hours of sunlight daily. Because of this, you need to dedicate a whole day to observe your yard and get to know the spots that receive full sunlight alongside the spots that receive partial or shade sunlight. Don’t panic if your yard is mostly shady! While you won’t be able to grow tomato plants in the shade, there are many other plants that love it! Just be sure to not skip this step, because your plants need their sunlight in proper portions to thrive!
2) Improve the Soil Fertility
The more fertile your soil is, the higher the growth rate of your vegetables. This applies to other plants as well. You can learn how fertile your soil is by using soil testing kits to assess its qualities. Residential soils always need a fertility boost, especially in new construction sites where the topsoil might have been stripped off. Your soil might be excessively wet, poor, or might be too alkaline or acidic. The remedy to this problem is quite simple: add organic matter.
3) Select the Most Suitable Plants to Grow
You should know your main focus, as it will help you select the best plants to grow in your garden. If you love food gardening, focus on what you like most about cooking and eating. If you are not into carrots or melons, do not bother growing them in your garden.
The available time you have for the garden is a basic factor to consider. Plants need regular care daily, so you should determine how much time you can dedicate to watering, weeding, etc. In general, starting small and getting to know the basics before kick-starting a major commitment is advised.
4) Know When to Plant
Knowing the exact time of year to plant has a lot to do with your growing zone and self-made observations, as well as weather tracking. Planting annuals just after a frost is best, but if there are plants in the ground earlier than this, you can do well by placing a cold frame over them to keep the soil warm and protect these tender plants.
Perennials always do much better, as is doesn’t really matter the time of the year you put them in the ground. Early spring or fall planting is mainly best in allowing these plants’ roots to reach out of dormancy naturally. If you are summer planting, make sure to water well in draining soils to avoid transplant shock.
Plants need water to survive. Morning is usually the best time to water your plants, as it prepares them for the heat of the day. Always make sure to water from ground level as well, and remember that newly planted vegetation, known as young or tender plants, own shallow roots and need more watering than mature plants do. Make sure to allow the top of your soil to dry out first before watering, and be certain that water does not stay at the root of your plant to avoid rot.
5) Go in Handy
Using the right tools to plant makes work in the garden go smoothly rather than be a chore. You do not use a butter knife to chop off raw carrots, and you should not use dull tools to work in your garden. Advised tools to use in your garden are a dirt rake, garden hoe, scuffle hoe, leaf rake, shovel, wheelbarrow, etc. Do not buy cheap plastic tools if you are able to avoid them. Good tools will save your efforts and your time, and most importantly, your back!
6) Maintain Your Garden
As your garden starts growing, you should help it achieve its full potential by keeping up with your basic garden chores. Water your plants, get rid of weeds, exterminate diseased vegetation, keep destructive insects away by picking them and dropping them off into a bucket of sudsy water. You may also want to spray an insecticidal soap (preferably an organic one), bought in a reputable garden center. Furthermore, make sure to support tall plants like tomatoes with stakes or tepees, and always harvest your vegetables immediately when they are ready.
There are various advantages that gardening provides to everyday people. It is a perfect means of interacting with nature and gives a lot of long-term gratification while you enjoy its benefits. These guidelines will help you build your garden sufficiently, but don’t forget to properly maintain your garden to enrich its usefulness and beauty, as well!