The gardening season is upon us, and the number of novice gardeners planting vegetables, flowers, and shrubs in the wrong place or at the wrong time, and under watering and over watering different varieties, will no doubt put many new gardener's new love in jeopardy and end in frustration and hopelessness.
Count me in the “hopeless" category, or at least those were my feelings about gardening last year. This year, I've taken matters into my own hands, and instead of giving into the temptation of hiring a professional landscaper, I decided to buckle down and take the time to read about what I had been doing wrong to see such a dismal turnout of the flowers I'd planted and other gardening disasters I'd endured since I bought a house just a year ago.
Mistake Number One : Planting bulbs and plants that attract common garden pests who will destroy them with great exuberance the following spring. You will need to be careful to get varieties that are resistant to animals and vermin that inhabit your area, such as deer, or else you may end up seeing your hard work eaten within a matter of days.
Deer are some of the worst offenders, as they will blow through an entire garden of tasty bulbs in a matter of one night, as they did with abotu 50 of my bulbs just days ago. Be sure to read the labels and look up deer resistant varieties and be aware of any other animals that may inhabit your area as well.
I have intimate knowledge of this foible unfortunately, and with my new barely-over-an-acre yard, I was pretty bummed out that I must have had, as my sister would say a “black thumb" (get it, instead of a green thumb, I kill everything).
Well, that's not really the case, I just had to find out what I was doing wrong and give my plants, trees, flowers and shrubs what they were looking for, since each had different needs.
My biggest mistake was that I thought all plants were treated the same. I believed that as long as you watered them a lot, gave them a spot with plenty of sunshine, and planted them in the same sort of soil, there was no way you could go wrong. That's simply not true, as many of you know.
Some plants, like tomato plants, which happen to be the most popular vegetable grown here where I live in Northeast Ohio, love sunshine and can grow in just about any soil, while others, like ivy and foxglove, love the shade and flourish in the darker, richer soil that tends to be present in shady areas.
Pruning is another huge issue that causes confusion amongst newbie gardeners (yes, I'm a case in point on this one too). For example, I pruned my hydrangea bushes all the way down last fall, and because of that, I will most likely see very little to no flowers this summer and fall.
The reason is that the wooden pieces that result after the hydrangea has lost it's greenness actually create the buds in the fall after their current blossoms die and fall off, and if you prune this all the way back in the fall, you will be cutting off the producing stems of the buds for flowers next season. Sometimes gardening is going against what you would think is common sense, and this is a good example.
Many other plants, like most rose bushes, do require a drastic pruning in the fall after they have “died" for the winter and essentially gone into a hibernating state. I mistakenly used this rule of thumb for roses and applied it to hydrangeas, which essentially is going to result in my bushes not having any blossoms this season.
Watering is another huge fauxpas where new gardeners tend to apply the same rules for all of their plants and flowers, even though they do not require a lot of watering.
An example of this is the difference between the salvia plant, which is actually an excellent choice for drought-prone locations, and the beautiful hanging plant, the fuschia, which thrives on tons of water.
Most plants do come with a tiny little direction stick when you buy them as starter plants in greenhouses, and if you are unsure of how to take care of a particular plant to get the maximum enjoyment out of it as well as maximum beauty and durability, then you can always ask a knowledgeable assistant in a local greenhouse where you are purchasing plants.
Of course, this wonderful thing called the internet and it's revolution of data at your fingertips is always a good source as well, where anyone can search for the best gardening techniques for specific plants is also a boon to any new gardener, and of course many who've been doing it for years as well!
Danna Schneider is the founder of Gen F20 HGH Releaser Reviews and Herbal Supplements for Anti Aging and Health , where news and suggestions on new natural ways to combat the aging process can be found as well as tips to live a healthier, more active and happier life through natural supplementation and lifestyle choices.