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.
Grow seasonings and kitchen herbs in your garden. Herbs are generally very simple to grow, and can even be made to thrive in a window box or indoor pot. However, these easy plants are very expensive to buy at the store. Growing them yourself can save you significant amounts of money.
Use groundcover perennials in sunny areas. Groundcover perennials can be used as an alternative to grass where there is minimal foot traffic, or in an area where grass is difficult to maintain, such as on a slope. They are also handy in between larger perennials, as they help to suppress weeds and keep the soil moist and cool. Good choices for groundcover perennials are creeping thyme, ajuga, various sedums, alyssum and armeria.
If you would like to create an eye-catching fall garden with a lot of height and contrasting colors, try planting spiky plants like the New Zealand flax, the yucca or tall ornamental grasses. Add drama with texture and color by adding chartreuse plants like the Golden Spirit smoke bush or the Tiger Eyes sumac. To contrast the chartreuse color, plant purple plants alongside the chartreuse plants like the Black Lace elderberry or Loropetalum.
Be sure to water your garden daily. Without daily water, your garden may quickly turn sour. If the idea of pulling out a hose daily is too much for you to stomach, consider installing some sort of sprinkler system. There is a cost, but it can save a lot of headaches and actually pay for itself via a healthy crop!
Sow plants in succession to each other for a steady harvest. When growing vegetables such as corn, snap peas, and lettuce that mature on a very predictable schedule, make two or three sowings two weeks apart to lengthen the harvest season. You can also plant two different varieties on the same day with different maturation times to ensure a longer season.
Use seedlings to run relay planting. Using seedlings can allow you to get a jump start on the growing season and improve yields to the harvest by extending time. If growing lettuce and a squash harvest is needed for summer, then after the lettuce has been harvested you can plant seedlings to get a jump start on another crop and a higher yield for the garden.
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.