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.
- Not Caring about soil amendment
I have noticed that many of us have a propensity to ignore the fact that soil is just like a living organism. It continuously goes through a process of change and evolution. Hence, the conditions of the soil of a particular place can undergo drastic change depending upon the extent of rainfall, lack of drainage, soil runoff, availability of sunlight and change of temperature. Hence, it is imperative that you check the pH level and the mineral profile of the soil before you opt for gardening. Again, there are certain plants that will deplete the soil nutrients more than certain other plants, leading to quick soil erosion. Hence, you need to put special emphasis on the soil treatment and soil amendment so that your produces are in the pink of health and glory at every given point in time.
- Over watering
If you are of the opinion that there is no harm in watering plants whenever you wish, you are only living in a fools’ paradise. It is like killing someone with excessive love and affection. Do you keep on eating even when you are not hungry? If not, they why think the same for plants? I have seen many over enthusiastic gardeners ‘killing’ plants simply by over watering them. Refrain from committing this crime. When you water a plant too much, the roots get filled up with water and plants simply hate standing on water. The root tissues need to breathe, and hence when you water them too much the air pockets in the tissues get filled up with water, choking them to death.
- Shallow watering
This is yet another mistake that people commit while watering plants, particularly with handheld garden hose. When you spray water on the top growth, you wash down the dust on the leaves and give the entire plant a nice shower. No problem with that. However, in the process you forget that you have not watered the root, and they are virtually dried, except for the water that have trickled down the stems. That is when the plants look tired and exhausted even after extensive watering, more so during summers. Remember, plants drink water through roots. Hence, it is imperative that you water the roots adequately. But then again, stick to the basic – do not over water them.
- Planting the sun lovers in shade and vice versa
Yes!! I have seen people doing this frequently. There are plants that love to be under sunshine and some others would love to be in shades. I have seen people not keeping in mind this, while planting. Planting the sun lovers in shade and the ones that love shades under direct sunlight is another crime that will lead to untimely death of plants.
There are other mistakes as well that will ruin your venture. Planting out of season, not pruning the bushes, shrubs and trees, hard pruning at the wrong times are some of them.