Owning and maintaining a successful garden is about more than just having a ‘green thumb’ or knowing when to plant your tomatoes. There is plenty that can be learned through everyday knowledge and tips that experienced gardeners are often willing to share with any listening ears. All you have to do is be interested in learning the right way.
Select plant varieties capable of producing large yields. Hybrids are usually hardier in terms of disease and weather resistance, and are designed to produce more.
Don’t over-plant your produce. If you plant more of a particular variety than you can use, store, and give away, it will simply go to waste. Plan out your garden so that you will have enough, without planting so much that your efforts will simply end up getting thrown away or rotting on the vine.
Divide large clumps of perennials. Some perennial plants lose vigor and flower less well if the clump becomes too large. Plants like Shasta daisies, bearded irises, phlox, chrysanthemum and coneflower benefit from being divided every three years. Without division they become congested, and the center of the clump will begin to die out. Simply dig the entire plant out, keeping the root ball intact, and divide it into pieces using a shovel. By doing this, you will have at least two or three new plants
If you are not a fan of wearing gloves when gardening but still hate dirty fingernails, try scraping your fingernails in a bar of soap prior to beginning. The soap will keep soil from entering underneath your nails, plus the soap will help keep your nails from cracking or breaking.
A spicy solution to ridding your garden of pests is to spray your plants with a hot mustard or red pepper mixture (one tablespoon of hot mustard or red pepper to one quart water). The solution is safe to spray directly on your garden foliage and pests can’t stand the taste of it
Using mulch is helpful to plants that are located in extreme heat. The best mulch to use is wood mulch because it holds in moisture and helps drown out the weeds. Wood mulch also adds nutrients to the dirt as it decomposes. Rock is used for mulch as well, however, rock does not retain moisture as well as wood mulch.
To save money on seeds, only use a small portion of the packet. In most cases, only a pinch of seeds are necessary, and seeds can easily be stored for the following year. You can also try splitting seed packets with your neighbors and friends. This is a great way to garden on a budget.
To keep cats, snakes, and other critters out of your garden, use moth balls. Moth balls may not smell pleasant to us, but they smell even worse to most animals, and they’ll easily scare them away. Simply scatter a few moth balls at the edges of your garden. Moth balls can be obtained very cheaply from drug stores and dollar stores.
Through the article, you should have picked up on a few tips that will help you plant and raise your garden with a little better results. As you can see, it takes a combination of time, care, and planning to make it reach the full potential. Of course, having a ‘green thumb’ doesn’t hurt.