- 1. Soil Preparation
- 2. Don’t bother digging over the soil
- 3. Be organic
- 4. Square Foot Gardening
- 5. Mix Veg & fruit in with the ornamentals (flowers, shrubs etc)
- 6. Grow in pots and containers
- 7. Using solar power
- 8. Composting and mulching
- 9. Keep you garden interesting
- 10. Be water-wise
- 11. The Right Plant For the Right Zone
- 12. Bring the outdoors inside
- 13. Consult Those in the Know – about planting needs, suitable plants etc
1. Soil Preparation
This is the very foundation of a successful garden. If your soil is poor or the wrong type, then your gardening efforts will always be a struggle.
All plants love and thrive in a well prepared soil.
Proviso – no matter how good your soil is, if the plant is the wrong type for your region, then it will always struggle or just die.. (e.g. plants that are susceptible to fungal disease will be handicapped in a tropical area)
Rule of thumb: a $.50 plant in a $5.00 hole is far better than a $5.00 plant in a $.50 hole.
2. Don’t bother digging over the soil
If you soil is well composted and mulched there is little need to break your back and di over those veg and flower beds. The natural action of the compost will keep the soil friable (and more so if you have plenty of worms. Mulch will keep weeds down and the soil at a more even temperature by retaining moisture better.
Digging will simply set all this back.
3. Be organic
A healthy plant will normally be disease resistant as good organic care will help boost its natural immune system. If you need some form of pest control, using a natural based control is not only safer, it is better for the environment as a whole.
Used on a food garden makes it safer for picking the fruit or veg without having a waiting period
4. Square Foot Gardening
This ingenious adaptation goes a long way to improving the production in your raised beds.
It is planting in raised beds of squares of four feet by four is more efficient that doing it in rows. Then, subdividing into one foot squares. And, according to what I have read, it works. It is raised beds on steroids.
5. Mix Veg & fruit in with the ornamentals (flowers, shrubs etc)
Lack space for a food garden? Then consider planting your veg in your flower beds amongst the annuals and perennials.
For example, use lettuce as an edging for a bed. Herbs such as rosemary and lavender give you both benefits – flowers and herb for the kitchen.
Be careful with herbs that spread – use them in pots and place among the annuals
6. Grow in pots and containers
This is a good solution for those who lack space for a regular garden – such as apartment dwellers.
However, it also a good ideas even for those with loads of yard space as it can add different aspects and texture to a garden design. Subtle placement of planted up post (anything from annuals to dwarf fruit trees).
7. Using solar power
Save money by connecting outdoor power usage to solar panels. For your landscaping lights and pool.
8. Composting and mulching
This is the companion piece to soil preparation. A well composted and regularly mulched garden will always perform well. It adjusts soil types, alters pH as needed, saves watering, keeps plants healthy.
9. Keep you garden interesting
Using variation of colours, foliage, textures, shapes, sizes and layout will not only keep the garden as a place of endless interest, but it will also encourage you to persist as it gives new challenges and pleasure.
For example, stagger plants and not just in a straight line, snake annuals amongst shrubs and trees; put low growers in front of higher ones; look at the shape and color of leaves and have a mix.
Seasons. Use the different seasons to add color – e.g. azaleas and camellias for winter flowering, roses in summer and so on.
It is entirely possible to have some flowering all year round.
Perfume and fragrance – make sure you have some plants with perfume so that the sense of smell is tickled. E.g. wisteria, stocks, gardenias, roses (natch!), jasmine.
10. Be water-wise
To reduce water bills and to conserve water in drier regions, being water-wise is just plain good sense.
- Mulch well
- Use drip systems for irrigation where possible.
- Mix in water retaining gels and pellets – especially in pots.
- Watering on top of the plants can also encourage fungal disease, such as blackspot in roses.
- Before planting a new lawn – lay out a drip system for it.
I can count! Just thought I add these three in!
11. The Right Plant For the Right Zone
This is really important – don’t expect plants to grow well if they are not suited to the climate and predominant soil type of your area. The latter can be altered, the former not – unless you believe in sci fi.
This is especially true for fruit trees.
12. Bring the outdoors inside
Snow in winter frozen yards? Can’t garden? The solution – get a collection of indoor plants – for their beauty – plus they help purify the air in the home.
13. Consult Those in the Know – about planting needs, suitable plants etc
Check with your local nursery
- Join a garden club
- Look around the neighbourhood – to see what grows well
- Take a walk around your parks and botanical gardens.
Following these 13 top tips for a successful garden will make your garden bloom and also add value to your property