gardener newbie? we have tips for you!
New to gardening? No problem-o. You can start your own dream garden with these 10 easy-to-follow tips.
location, location, location.
Starting a garden is just like real estate, it’s all about location. Place your garden where you’ll see it regularly, you’ll want to admire it and watch for any unwanted activity. That way, you’ll be much more likely to spend time in it.
let the sunshine in, or should you?
Misjudging sunlight is a common when you’re first learning to garden. Watch the sun at different parts of the day to see how it plays through your yard before choosing a spot for your garden. If you plan on planting edibles like vegetables, herbs, and fruits, they need at least 6 hours of sun in order to thrive.
refresh your plants.
One of the best gardening tips is to plan your new garden near a water source. Make sure a hose is close to your garden site, that way you don’t have to lug water each time your plants get thirsty. An easy way to tell if plants need watering is to push a finger an inch down into the soil (that’s about one knuckle deep). If it’s dry, time to get out the hose.
starting at the bottom now we’re here.
When you first start a garden, the most important piece of advice is to invest in soil that’s nutrient-rich and well-drained. You can do this by using the right blend by mixing 3 inches of Miracle-Gro® All Purpose Garden Soil into the top 6 to 8 inches of existing soil if you’re planning to plant in the ground.
When space is at a premium, you can use containers to make the most of it. Many plants thrive in pots, including vegetables, herbs, flowers, fruit trees, berries, and shrubs. Make sure when gardening in containers, the pot is large enough for the plant it’s hosting, and fill it with Miracle-Gro® Moisture Control® Potting Mix. It’s specially formulated to help plants in pots thrive, and it also helps protect against over- and under-watering.
your perfect match.
It’s important to select plants that match your growing conditions. This means putting sun-loving plants in a sunny spot, and giving ground dwelling vines like pumpkins and melons ample elbow room (or a trellis to climb). Do your homework and choose varieties that will grow well in your environment with the space you have. Instead of trying to grow from seeds get a head start with vigorous young plants.
learn your frost dates.
Timing is everything. Planting too early (or late) in the season can spell disaster for your garden. You’ll need to know the last average spring frost date for your area so you don’t accidentally kill plants by putting them out too soon. Another date to make note of is your first average fall frost date so that you get your plants harvested or moved indoors before late-season cold damages them.
mulch, your secret weapon.
Layer it on. Apply a layer of mulch that’s 2 to 3 inches deep around each plant. Mulch will go to work reducing weeds by blocking out the sun, and reducing moisture loss through evaporation, so you have to water less. For a polished look, put down a layer of Scotts® Nature Scapes® bagged mulch. You can also use straw, shredded leaves, pine straw, or other locally available materials.
A great start to your garden starts with great soil, but that soil works best with regular boosts of high-quality nutrition for your plants. In other words, great soil + top-notch plant food = super garden success! So, a month after planting, begin feeding your garden with plant food like Miracle-Gro® Water Soluble All Purpose Plant Food. Be sure to follow label directions.
one last piece of advice…
Stock up on the basic tools you need to make it easier to grow, and keep at it.
A great garden takes a little time to grow.