There’s nothing quite like a garden in full bloom. Fortunately, it’s not that difficult or expensive to turn your own patch of grass into a botanical work of art. Here’s how to make it happen:
Prepare your garden: Before you put anything in the soil, you will need to get the ground geared up for planting. First, remove all weeds, making sure to pull out the roots. Next, revitalize the soil from its long, dry winter by adding fertilizer or compost.
Determine sunlight exposure: Make sure you know exactly how much sunlight each area of your garden gets so you can purchase the appropriate plants for each spot. Some plants can handle the midday summer sun, and some will die from that exposure. Others will do well in a shaded area, and some need just a bit of filtered sunlight to thrive. Observe your garden’s sun exposure throughout the day and do your research before purchasing any seeds or plants.
Pick your flowers: It’s always exciting to pick out the flowers that will bring your garden to life. Before you drop a bit of everything into your shopping cart at the nursery though, consider these two factors: annuals vs perennials.
There are advantages and disadvantages to both. Annuals include begonias, cosmos, geraniums and marigolds. Though they only live for one season, they are typically cheaper than perennials and bloom all season long, giving you more time to enjoy their beauty. Conversely, perennials, which include tulips, lavenders, coneflowers and hydrangeas, last several years but have a shorter blooming life and are usually more expensive. Do you like to change up your garden every year? Would you rather not have to plant each year? Consider each element carefully before making your selection.
Choose vegetable plants: No garden is complete without some edibles. Here are three easy-to-grow veggies to get you started:
Zucchini: The summer squash grows quickly and is simple to plant and care for. To speed up the process, soak your zucchini seeds in moist paper towels and wait for them to sprout before planting.
Peas: Snap and snow peas take several months to grow. You can plant them early in the season; even before the soil is completely warm.
Tomatoes: Sweet cherry tomatoes grow quickly and will turn any salad into a gourmet dish. Choose an area for your vine that gets full sun exposure.
Start planting: Before you get started, though, check your seed packet for the best planting time. Make sure you aren’t planting too early or too late in the season. It’s also important to plan your garden in full detail before you start digging.
On the day of planting, your soil should already be moist and prepared for seeding. When planting each seed or flower, determine how far beneath the soil that particular plant needs to go. Then add fertilizer as per the package instructions, gently incorporating the fertilizer into the soil. Next, place your seed or flower in the soil and fill the hole with soil. Lastly, add mulch to help ward off weeds and diseases.
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