You may garden alone or with others, but in many ways gardening is a team activity. By gathering the knowledge of several expert growers and putting it here, we have placed some great tips within your reach. Use these tips to create a fantastic garden or share the information with family and friends.
Buying a container-grown shrub. Slide the shrub out of its container to check for a well-developed root system. The roots should have healthy, white tips, and not look dry at all. Don’t buy a plant if it has poorly developed roots, or if the roots are congested and coiled around the base of the pot. These kinds of roots rarely establish themselves once they are planted in the ground.
If you have a vegetable garden and plan on eating the vegetables, you should inspect them carefully every week. Look for bugs and worms or traces of disease and damages. Do not eat a vegetable that does not look healthy. Make sure you wash your vegetables carefully before you cook them.
Avoid rose mildew. This fungus affects many types of roses, especially in wet weather, when days are warm and nights are cold. Small gray or white spots will appear on the plant, forming a felt-like down. Shoot tips are killed and buds fail to open. Don’t plant roses close together – they need good air circulation to avoid mildew. Spray any affected plants with fungicidal soap.
Divide large clumps of perennials. Some perennial plants lose vigor and flower less well if the clump becomes too large. Plants like Shasta daisies, bearded irises, phlox, chrysanthemum and coneflower benefit from being divided every three years. Without division they become congested, and the center of the clump will begin to die out. Simply dig the entire plant out, keeping the root ball intact, and divide it into pieces using a shovel. By doing this, you will have at least two or three new plants!
To discourage garden pests of the rodent variety from eating your beautiful perennial flowers and tasty vegetables, brush your dog or cat and use bits of the accumulated hair near the base of the plants being bothered. Garden rodents such as moles, gophers, rabbits and chipmunks can smell a predator and while your little Yorkie may not look like much of a threat, it only takes his scent to ward off the garden troublemakers. Don’t have a dog or cat to brush? Volunteer to brush a neighbor’s pet for the cause!
If you like to plant flowers that produce a lot of fragrance, consider planting them close to your house. One reason is that you can enjoy the scent whether you are inside or outside your house. Another reason is that the heat from the walls of your house can intensify the scent from your flowers, making them more fragrant.
A little extra effort can go a long way. These tips can improve your garden, dramatically or just make a tiny but important change. By introducing a fresh idea to your methods, gardening can become easier for you, as well as, a more positive experience. Impress your friends and neighbors with a healthy and lush garden.