Gardening is a hobby that people all over the world can enjoy. It can be something to do both during retirement and the school holidays! What’s more, you don’t have to have years of experience to start becoming one with your garden.
1. Plan your garden
This doesn’t have to be extensive and time consuming, but making sure you have a clear idea of what you’d like to achieve is really important. Whether you’re intending to give your garden a complete makeover or just sort out a small overgrown bed spend some time to work out what it you’d like to do.
But I just want to plant a few flowers, there isn’t much to plan?
WRONG! There’s many things to consider before you start to plant. Sure, you could just pop to the shops and buy some flowers, pop them in the ground and Hey, Presto! It will look lovely. But what happens 2/3 months down the line when the plants start to change?
Things to consider:
- Time of year – Different plants flower at different times. You may not know what plants flower when, but even noting that this is important is a really good start. Staff at your local garden centre will be able to point you in the right direction with this one.
- Colours – You want to have a think about what colours you would like in your beds. Maybe you don’t want any colour? Maybe you want a plethora of different colours? You could also have themes and schemes too. Maybe you want a nice warm array or red and oranges?
- Maintenance – Have a think about how much time you can give to your garden? Maybe you plan to be out there pottering about every day but maybe you can only spare one day a month? A little bit of research into low-maintenance plants will keep your garden tip top long term.
- Space – You must be sure you fill your space evenly for a really impressive garden. You also want to make sure your garden isn’t overcrowded too
Creating a plan doesn’t need to be very time consuming. Don’t worry, it doesn’t need to be a full on dissertation! you could simply make a list to remind yourself of what you want before you head out to the garden centre. However, if you have a bit more time to spare, making a map of what you’d like to plant can give you a really clear idea that you’re on the right track.
2. Prepare your area!
Make sure you spend a little time before you rush out preparing the area you want to plant in. It’s important to give your new green friends a healthy happy home to live in.
Surely there’s no need to prepare the soil, its all the same earth at the end of the day!
Nope! Wrong again! It’s quite common for new gardeners to skip this stage, thinking it is an unnecessary step, but they’re the ones who end up with a dead garden further down the line.
De-weed – Get rid of any unwanted weeds out of the ground before you plant anything new. No one likes squatters and your new little additions don’t want competition for nutrients and they certainly won’t appreciate food being stolen right off their soily plate!
Soil – Pick up some compost and mix this in with the soil, this will give your new plants all of the good stuff they need to thrive. Also be sure to remove any rubbish or large debris, such as rocks and stones.
Other Plants – Consider their neighbours. Be sure to trim and prune surrounding plants, they might be stealing sunlight and generally getting in the way.
Your new plants will really be happy in their new home if you follow these simple steps.
3. Treat new plants like babies
One of the most exciting things can be returning from the garden centre with a whole collection of new plants and shrubs ready to be planted in their new beds. However this is a very crucial stage and its important to treat these new plants with great care to ensure they live a long and healthy life.
It can be very tempting to just rip them out the tray and plonk them straight in the soil but there are a few things to consider.
Travel – Time for a bit of Captain Obvious, but make sure your new plants are carefully transported. Ensure they won’t fall over and aren’t going to be covered by anything else.
Avoid the stems – That really hurts! This can easily bruise and break the stems, killing the plants. The better way to remove them from the tray is to turn them upside down, squeeze the sides of the pot and let the plant carefully fall into your hand.
You won’t need to tuck your plants in and sing them a lullaby each night but taking a bit of time and care in getting them from shop to soil will really give them the best start in life.
4. Keep on top of your lawns
When people think about gardens they usually think about the colour green. The largest patch of green in a garden normally comes from the lawn. This, surprisingly, can really make an impact on the first impression of the garden. A healthy thriving lawn really sets off a garden and makes it scream cared for and glorious. However, poorly maintained grass can make your garden instantly look un-cared for and overgrown.
It doesn’t take loads of work, first of all make sure you keep on top of mowing it. On average you should be mowing your lawn once every couple of weeks to really keep it trim and smart. Also keep an eye on patches of your lawn that may need re-seeding. In hot weather invest in a sprinkler to keep your lawn from dehydrating and turning yellow!
5. Hire a gardener
But seriously, to keep your garden at its best, hire in some help. This doesn’t have to stop you from having any involvement in your garden, but it just ensures that what you do, is fun. You can chose where you draw the line on what you’d like to maintain and what will become a chore.
Get in touch now for a free consultation!