Taking a step into the wondrous and bountiful land of gardening for the very first time might feel a tad bit daunting, but by keeping the helpful tips listed below in mind, you will soon find yourself growing all kinds of vegetables and flowers, on par with some of the best gardeners around.
Before planting anything, clean up as much as possible the area where you plan on having flowers or any other delicate plants. Remove all the weeds and the grass if you think it is necessary. Your flowers should not have any competitors for the nutrients they need while they grow.
Controlling pests is essential to a high yield garden. There are a variety of products available on the market that will kill any invasive pest in the garden. Many organic pest controls have been perfected over the years that work very well, although they can be more expensive than chemical alternatives. With a quick internet search one can find many safe home remedies for pest control too.
Start a compost bin, and enjoy nutrient-rich fertilizer that you can use for your vegetable plants, herbs, flowers and more. Food scraps and peels, coffee grounds, eggshells, newspaper, paperboard, yard waste and other organic matter are perfect additions to your compost bin. Keep a small bucket or bag in your freezer as an odor-free way to collect kitchen waste, and empty the container into the outdoor bin when it is full.
Check your store bought soil for pests. If you buy from big home improvement stores, your soil may have pests such as aphids. To kill the insects and their larvae, put the soil in a metal baking pan and place it covered in a 400 degree oven for 20 to 30 minutes. Let cool before using.
Having beautiful bulb plants is fun while it lasts, but once they have bloomed you are stuck with bulb foliage that is not very attractive. Try to plant bulbs among plants that will grow up and over faded bulb leaves. This way, once the lilies or daffodils are spent, the old foliage will be hidden by the new growth of other plants.
Use an egg carton to start your seedlings early. Egg cartons are cheap and easy to obtain, and can contain enough soil to get a plant started. Once you’re ready to plant, you can simply rip the carton away from the seedling without damaging the root ball and place the whole soil ball into the ground.
Recycle your coffee grounds and use them to acidify the soil for all of your acid loving plants. Plants that like an acidic soil include roses, tomatoes, cyclamen, violets, gardenias, begonias and hibiscus. Apply the grounds approximately one quarter inch thick for the best results. If you don’t care for coffee, leftover tea will produce the same results.
To keep animals from digging up and destroying your bulbs, wrap the bulbs in a thin layer of steel wool. This won’t prevent the bulbs from growing in any way, but will scare away any animal that’s begun digging it up. You can purchase steel wool from any home improvement store.
Pick your vegetables when the temperature is moderate to avoid bruising them. For vegetables growing on vines, cut them carefully rather than twisting them off to avoid damage to the plant.
After reading and applying the helpful tips listed above, you should feel a bit more at ease in the land of gardening. You have the tools and now, you need to use them. You should feel inspired and ready to begin your gardening journey to grow more beautiful and delicious, plants and crops.