Category Archives: Garden Care

Ongoing Garden Maintenance Essentials

To talk about gardening among any number of gardening enthusiasts becomes a bit like talking about the weather at all times of the day. Do not be alarmed and don’t you dare become irritated by this. Once you encounter such fine individuals, you can, of course, expect to hear just about anything under the sun related to gardening. If you have aspersions towards becoming a keen gardener, you need to start getting used to this.

You will, of course, always be hearing about the weather, because that remains a critical aspect of every gardener’s day. How the weather turns out for the day is going to dictate how the gardener is going to address his garden maintenance program for the day. If you are entirely new to gardening at this stage, that should at least be a feather in your cap. Perhaps one of the reasons why you wanted to take up this hobby in the first place is so that you can escape the hum-drum routine of your usual working day.

You need a healthy diversion, and this, ladies and gentlemen, is it. Gardening is not a routine enterprise. Expect to be doing something different each and every day. Yes, every day, even if it means going out into your garden in the morning before work and having a chat with your new-born flowers. Yes, many gardening enthusiasts do this too, they talk to their plants. Are they crazy? Do not be too sure, communing with your garden has been known to work wonders. Just ask any avid gardener.

But long before you get to this stage, you still need to learn some of the basics. One of the most important toolkits that you are going to need to acquire is a workable and ongoing garden maintenance plan. How successful and disciplined you are going to be with this is entirely up to you. You could equate the required prowess with that of keeping bee-friendly gardens.  That also leads to providing you with the answer of just what type of garden you will be cultivating first time off.

The emphasis needs to be fully focused on organic gardening. And that, ladies and gentlemen, does make things a little easier for you at this stage. You can cross these off of your first shopping list entirely, and, for that matter, any future shopping list, as your gardening maintenance checklist and garden and home shopping list grows longer. You will no longer need pesticides or chemically carbonated compost or manure.

Ever. All the compost or manure that you will be producing, yes, you will be making your own, will be produced right in your very own garden and home. You will be saving money this way and not a shred of anything disposable will ever go to waste. You will always have your leftovers from the kitchen. All food, or rather, vegetable peelings will be going straight into the compost heap. Not even your cover to cover read newspaper print will be going to waste, because that comes in handy when producing mulch for the surrounding soil around your newly planted goodies.

By way of one of a number of basic introductions you are going to need for your first gardening exploits, let us introduce you to some of the tools, all surprisingly basic and easy to use, that you will need. You may even find that you already have some of these handy but necessary tools.

 

A pair of scissors

Like the good old pair of scissors for instance. This will primarily be used to snip away dead flowers, herbs and for the harvesting of certain organic vegetables. It will also be used for other basic functions such as opening a seed packet or cutting a piece of string.

Some call them weeders

Did you know that in America, they generally like to call them dandelion diggers? This could have something to do with the indigenous plant species dominance across that continent’s landscape. The specialist weeder can penetrate the soil easily without damaging nearby plants and remove unwanted weed roots from deep in the soil. Fork points are narrow and sharp to do the jobs that all gardeners seem to hate effectively enough.

Let’s call this a soil knife

You may find that you need not even nip down to the hardware store or nursery to prize yourself of a specialist tool. You may just find that there is a suitable knife waiting in one of your kitchen drawers, waiting to get to work in your new garden.

All gardeners need their pruning shears

If you want to keep your garden looking neat and tidy, and if you want all plants to grow properly, this is one of those gardening appliances you simply cannot ignore. This is something you will be buying because you will want its edges to be friendly to the plants and branches you will be pruning (cutting, in other words, but effectively and artistically) in the future. There are more than enough guides on the internet merry go round that can teach you how to utilize these specialist shears correctly.

We call it a spade

But maybe you will be calling it a shovel down your way. Go in for a small spade with a long, narrow blade that is curved and can easily help you to dig deep holes, if necessary. A long-handled spade is also useful for digging through hard, clayed soil.

And don’t forget the rakes

And by the time you’ve purchased one, please learn how to handle it correctly so as not to damage your growing plants. Enthusiasm is great when you have it in bucket loads but the damage could bring a tear or two.

And so, what are you waiting for. Time to go shopping and to get digging. Then you can read the next story which specifically talks about the birds and the bees. You may just enjoy that one. See you then.

The Best Way to Water the Plants

Watering plants is one the most crucial aspects of gardening. The task might look pretty easy apparently. However, the reality is that there are a lot of aspects associated with watering. Let us look into them one by one.

Firstly I would like you to remember three aspects before you start gardening – the type of plants you have in your garden, the capacity of the soil of your garden to retain the moisture, the climate of the place where you reside.

The type of plants you have in your garden

Plants that come up with extensive and widespread root system, or the ones that have some extra capacity to store moisture can survive even on less water. These plants are drought tolerant and can even do without much of water. However, the non drought tolerant plants, on the other hand, would need a lot of water for surviving. Hence, the extent of water that you need to provide will depend upon the type of plants in question.

The Best Ways to Keep Your Garden Healthy

One of the most discussed gardening topics is what makes a plant infected by diseases. Or in other words, how a plant can get infected by disease? The question that pops up close to the heel of this question is that how to keep these diseases at bay, and how to keep the plants healthy.
The most important thing that needs to be understood is that the disease in plants can be kept at bay with a methodology that is known as disease prevention, which is also called disease triangle. Diseases can attack a plant as and when the combination of three things fall in place – the plant getting sick, the plant getting under an attack of a pathogen, and environmental conditions that are supportive to disease set in. If you can ward off any one of these factors, the probability of the infection is minimized by a considerable extent. Or in other words, you will be able to knock off one of these three factors that form the disease triangle. Let us discuss some of the ways in which this can be done.
You need to examine properly the plants that you are purchasing
Well, this is the easiest way to ward off diseases from your garden. You just cannot indulge in getting a diseased plant for your garden. However, here what I would like to mention is that, one of the most difficult things in the world of gardening is getting to know how a healthy and disease-free plant should look like. Here I must say that it is a huge subject, and it entirely depends upon the type of the plant in question.

Common Gardening Mistakes to Avoid

Gardening in my opinion is one of the best hobbies one can practice. It is not rocket science. However, at the same time, it is not that easy a practice as well. I have learned through experience that you need to follow a certain methodology in order to grow the best produces, and for that you need to avoid a few very rudimentary, yet critical mistakes that can ruin your venture. Here are some of them.

  • Under prepared Beds

This is a very common mistake that I find people ending up with, due to sheer ignorance or at times due to utter callousness and laziness. As and when the seeds or the seedlings are planted during the spring, we do this simply by digging small holes with the help of our hands or the small hand shovels, thinking that the room that we thus make will be sufficient for them. However, the fact is that when the soil subsequently dries up and becomes rock hard, the tender root tips are unable to penetrate that hard soil, leading to subsequent death of the seedling or resulting in the growth of a stunted plant thereafter. Hence, it is necessary to double-dig the garden bed and add sufficient compost and leaf mold that will make the soil loose enough for a good underground growth of the root.

A Guide to Watering Plants During Winter

The first and foremost thing that I would like you all to remember is that plants do not need much care during the winters as they do during the summers. However, it is still important to take care of them during the winter. That means you just cannot afford to neglect them. You need to water them even during the winter. Let us discuss a few things regarding watering the plants during winter.

Plants are to some extent damaged due to ice and strong wind during the winter. In many regions, you will find that precipitation of normal winter is more than enough for plants, as the cold weather ensures that there is no need of too much watering. However, one very important thing that I would like you to ensure is that the plants have adequate hydration. It helps to protect them from the harshness of winter. Let us discuss some of the steps that you need to take:

Step 1: First of all, you need to water the garden in a proper way throughout the fall. Particularly, when it comes to watering the saplings or shrubs that you have freshly planted, you need to water deeply. The idea is to give your garden a thorough watering at the interval of every two to three weeks, till the arrival of the very first frost.

The Best Ways to Conserve Water for Your Garden

Conserving water is one of the most imperative aspects of garden. This has to be done if you are to excel in the art of gardening. This is not only your duty not to use water abundantly and spoil it, but this is needed so that you never have water scarcity, which is the last thing you should encounter. There are a number of ways in which you can conserve water. However, here I shall discuss the ones that I have practiced days in and days out.

Hold Water in Water Pots; Carry Out Gardening in the Morning

It is widely believed that it is best to water the plants during the day or in the morning, as this always has a noteworthy effect on the plants so far as their growth is concerned. However, my point is that you need to make sure that after you water the plant, you are able to preserve it for a considerable period of time, as you do not have to channelize too much of water for this purpose. This is more evident if you are staying somewhere that is infamous for scarcity of water. The best way to do that is to use pots that are made up materials that have a high moisture retention capacity. That means, you need to make sure that the plants do not dry out quickly simply because all the water that you have poured have simply drained out of the pot.