Four basic gardening tips
To make sure your gardening and landscaping investment pays off, follow these rules of thumb:
- The mother of all gardening tips: consider your plants’ basic needs. This is the mother of all gardening tips. There are no plants that will do well and be a good fit for every location and condition. Different varieties (cultivars) of the same plant will grow to different heights and widths. Some plants will dry out in direct sun, while others will slowly die in a shady location. Most will rot away in damp soil, but some will actually thrive. Have a look at our Landscaping plants page. It will guide you to various pages that will help you choose the right plants for the right spots.
- Consider soil conditions. Soil can be acid or basic, rich or poor, it can contain more or less sand or clay. Some plants will adapt well to most soils, but some will simply not. So make sure that the plants you choose fit your soil, or work your soil so as to match your plants’ needs. Agriculture lime will make your soil less acidic and give a boost to your lilacs, while organic matter, such as peat moss for instance, will make your soil more acidic and make your rhododendrons bloom like crazy. To make poor soil or clay soil better for most plants, you can use compost. For more information on plants and their needs, refer to our Landscaping plant guide.
- Give your plants the best chances possible when you put them in the ground. For those plants that come in a pot, the hole you dig in the ground should be twice the size of the pot, the soil you put in the hole should be well suited to the plant’s needs, and you should use lots of water. Adding some manure or peat moss and perhaps some bone meal may also be a very good idea. This will stimulate the plant to produce new roots and to claim the place as its own. You can also consider using mycorrhizae, a microscopic mushroom that can greatly accelerate root growth. When planting bulbs or seeds, you should make sure that your flowerbed is also as welcoming as possible. The soil below the bulbs or seeds should be loose enough and well suited to your plants’ needs. Bear in mind that it’s what you don’t see (the roots) that make what you do see and enjoy (the foliage and flowers) look good. Remember. We want you to be an awesome gardener. The easier you make it for the roots to grow and get the water and the nutrients the plants need, the better results you will get. Our Landscaping plant guide also contains some information on this.
- Finally, be a gardener that cares. Visit your garden regularly. Look at your plants, see if the leaves look healthy, make sure that they are free from pests. Make sure that your plants get the nutrients and water they need. Trim them when they need trimming and leave them alone when they don’t need trimming. Don’t consider this an annoying chore, but rather a grounding, almost meditative activity.
Follow these basic gardening tips and you will be one hell of a gardener.
Of course, there are a few basic landscaping rules that you need to follow. These are really quite simple and could be summed up as follows: the right plants for the right place.
Have you considered all the options available to you? If not, then have a look at our Landscaping ideas page.