If you have just started out as a gardener, you probably have visions of a beautiful, bountiful garden and lots of enjoyable hours tilling the soil and reaping the fruits of your labors. While this can surely be the case, very often, gardening is lots of hard work followed by baffled disappointment – at least until you know what you are doing! Here are some ideas to help you cultivate your green thumb as quickly as possible.
If you want to have a more productive garden, expand your growing season into the fall by using row covers. Row covers keep heat in, frost out, and also protect against deer intrusion. The crops under the row covers should still be somewhat resistant to cold however, so it is best to choose greens and root vegetables.
A good tip of what to plant in the garden is to plant high-value crops. Value is a subjective term, but plant the things that are most costly to buy, as long as they are suited to the climate. The whole garden does not have to be devoted to this, but if an area is earmarked for this type of crop, it can save money in the coming season when prices are sky high for certain crops.
Grow from seeds. In garden centers, it is usually much cheaper to purchase a packet of seeds than to buy the equivalent number of grown plants. Remember, if you sow some seeds before the summer, you can get a garden full of bright, colorful flowers for a very cheap price.
Create a record journal for your garden. Keep track of when you planted your seeds, when they germinated, how many grow to full size, the yield, etc. You will have more knowledge about your plants and a good idea of how successful your methods are. Use this information for your next grow cycles.
Create a convenient cleaning station next to your outside faucet or garden hose. Collect all of your old soap slivers from around the house (or simply use a whole bar) and place in a plastic mesh bag. You can often find these bags in the produce department of your favorite store for storing vegetables in the refrigerator, or in the laundry department for delicates. Hang the bag near your hose, and the mesh works as a scrubber as well as containing the soap for an easy hand washing station.
An old wagon can help save time as well as your back. Instead of constantly having to retrieve your gardening tools as you work your way around your garden, commandeer an old child’s wagon. An old wagon works as well as a garden cart, and can often be obtained free or very cheaply if you get it used.
By following these tips, you should be able to get a good start on your gardening hobby. Keep in mind that container gardening is a very easy and controllable method of gardening that is just great for beginners. You can plant almost anything in a container garden, and if you are a renter, you can easily take your garden with you if you move. Just remember to keep your container garden well watered since it will have no resources to draw on other than what you give it.