Starting a garden can be a big task for anyone, especially those who consider themselves green-thumb challenged. Not only do you have to do a bunch of research and prep work, you’ll also have to follow guidelines on how to maintain it. It’s definitely not a project where you can just sit back and enjoy the benefits.
But for those ready to give it a try, it makes for a fantastic summer activity and can be your family project over the next few months.
If you’re new to the gardening business, check out the tips below in order to help you begin your quest for the best garden in the neighborhood.
Know Your Season and Region
Just like fashion has its colors and new trends while spring can bring something totally different to the table, plants, fruits and vegetables are the exact same. Not everything is going to work at any given time, no matter how exact and precise you are.
The USDA has a seasonal guide for produce that will help you determine what are some of the best options for the season, meaning you’re not going to be left with a bunch of failing plants.
It’s also important to be aware of your region and any limitations that it may bring. If you’re planting something that needs a lot of shade and cooler temperatures, it might not be the best idea to plant it in Texas.
Don’t Rush It
Once you have an idea of what you’re going to plant, it’s time to start planning out your garden. If this is your first garden, or first you’ve done in a long time, don’t try and make it enormous. Pick just a few plants or produce to start with and see how it goes, once you feel like you’ve improved and shown that you can maintain a garden, then you can start thinking bigger and bigger.
One part of not rushing it is going for seedlings instead of seeds. Seedlings are typically weather proof and easier to plant and see growth for a first-time gardener. That can be a big boost of confidence!
Zone it Out
Before you put seeds in the ground, you need to plan just where you’re going to put your garden. While you might have a nice area in your front or backyard lined out, you need to consider a few things:
- How much sunlight or shade will my plants receive here?
- Does my hose reach here?
- Will I be building raised beds?
Figuring out how much sunlight and shade they’re going to be receiving during the day is important to their long-term survival.
Raised beds are optional, but have a number of benefits. You’ll see less weeds in your garden and more protection from nature as well. You don’t want to make them too wide, or else you’ll have to step into your garden to grab or tend to the plants.
Learn From the Experts
While you may not have gardening experts as neighbors, you can head down to your local nursery or home improvement store and ask around. They may not have all the answers, but they’ll be able to give you some tips and recommendations on what seeds to buy or what tools you’ll need.
All those gardeners and experts were once in the same place you were: trying something new out for the first time and not being sure of the result. Don’t feel embarrassed or ashamed in asking for a bit of extra help.
Chances are, your first garden probably isn’t going to turn out like the Hanging Gardens of Babylon. People won’t stop on the street and marvel at your first creation. Heck, even little critters may be avoiding your garden.
But fear not! That is all in the process of starting out a new project. Gardening isn’t easy. It takes time, money and a lot of continuous effort. Whenever you make a few mistakes, you can just learn from what you did wrong and use it to improve your garden and take it to the next level. Soon, you’ll be the talk of the neighborhood and ready to pass on your green thumb knowledge to the next person.