A well-kept garden can complement the looks of every living property. However, before you can call yourself a proud owner of a neat garden you should know which are the essential elements that you should not miss to have in it. Of course, don't try to skip the fact that you have to take proper care of it – you can't just plant the flowers and expect them to grow by themselves. Below you will discover the step-by-step guide on how to grow a decent garden and make your neighbours envious!
- Start with getting an idea – plan carefully everything thoroughly is what you should do! Before you get the shovel and the gloves make sure you know what you are opting for. If you want to grow annuals, have in mind that you should replant them each year. If you want to grow perennials wait until Fall. In every season different greens are planted. For instance, Fall is a good time to plant not only perennials but bulbs and shrubs. However, when you choose what type of garden you want, start small. Don't try to maintain a big garden if you are an amateur otherwise you risk wasting your time and killing plants. Begin with a specific garden – herb, flower, vegetable. When you are more confident with your gardening abilities, feel free to mix and match!
- Pick the right place – as we already mentioned, when you figure what type of garden you are growing, choose the place so it can meet the plant's` demands. For example, if you are growing a vegetable garden, you should know that veggies need between 5 and 6 hours of full sun each day. Yet, if your garden is not so sunny, there are a lot of plants that tolerate that. If you are not sure you are recommended to contact professional gardeners – they will give you valuable advice and will help you with planting your garden. For your own pleasing, select a spot where you can admire your garden from the inside of your house! Also, when you consider the place have in mind to put it close to a water spigot so you will not have to drag a hose around your yard.
- Clean up the ground – removing the sod that covers the area you are planning to call your garden. When you want the results right away just dig it out. If you have enough time you can smother the grass with newspapers. Usually, alayer of 5 or 6 sheets will be enough but if you have St. Augustine or Bermuda Grass you should double that. Lay even few inches of compost on them and after 3 - 4 months for a fully decompose. We recommend digging the sod out – it's not that backbreaking work and you will be able to start your garden right away.
- Soil should be improved – really rarely there will be a nutritional soil that will not need a boost. We advise to go for the organic – dry grass clippings, compost, decayed leaves, manure – whatever you have on hand. The fastest way to make the organic matter do its job is to dig it altogether with the soil but if by any reason you can't do it or you have already established beds, leave it on the surface – it will find its way into the ground in a couple of months. Many places now offer soil testing – this is the most certain way to find what the soil in your garden lacks so you can provide it for a better soil quality and happy plants!
- To dig or not to dig – when you dig the soil you loosen it planting will be easier. Yet you should be careful as a soil being too wet when digging can lose its structure. You should learn how to distinguish when it`s a good time to dig in the garden. Take a handful of soil in your fist. When you press it a ball should be formed but when you drop it on the ground it should easily fall apart – this is how you will figure whether the soil is moist enough. If you are growing a flower or vegetable garden the soil should be turned once a year. However, if you are having perennials planted you have to double-dig. The method includes removing the top of the soil, loosening with a spading fork, placing some compose and then digging once again the layer. You should work organic matter one more time and then place the top layer – it`s a lot of work but it will definitely make a difference!