For many, their garden is seen as a retreat from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. A garden gives people the opportunity to grow their own fruit and vegetables, keep chickens or other smaller animals or merely create their own private oasis, filled with carefully chosen and tended plants.
As any keen, green fingered gardener will tell you, gardening is a year round task. It’s not something you can get away with neglecting during the wet and windy autumn and winter months with the aim of neatening it up in the spring and summer. It’s best to get into a regular routine of maintenance and planting to ensure the health of your garden.
Though some people are able to dedicate more time to their gardens than others, there are a few suggestions and tips which even the most seasoned gardener would do well to remember. Arguably, these tips are more suited to those who can be regularly found in the flower beds and the garden shed but even novices or fair weather gardeners can benefit from them.
Though primarily designed for vegetables and other produce, raised beds can be a benefit to flowers and to the gardener. Research suggests that raised beds can potentially yield up to four times as much produce as regular beds and can provide a brilliant centre piece for a smaller garden. What’s more, raised beds are typically at waist height, which reduces the risk of back pain from tending ground level beds; this will please gardeners of all abilities because the ease of tending can either reduce the time spent in the garden, or alternatively, allow you to spend more time seeing to your plants due to the ease of access.
Nourish The Soil
Every gardener worth their trowel knows that plants can’t grow without good soil. Soil provides the essential nourishment which all plants need to grow and you can keep it nourished by regularly spreading compost onto your flower beds and vegetable patches. When it comes to compost, kitchen left overs are the best, in particular, used tea bags and the water used to boil vegetables; both are rich in nutrients. There are also a number of soil enhancing agents available from garden centres which can help keep soil healthy and suitable for growing things. Try to fall into a monthly regimen of soil enhancement to yield the best results.
Interplanting basically means that you plant more than one type of plant in each plot of soil. Though this may seem obvious to some, others shy away from this practice, mainly due to aesthetic reasons; however, interplanting allows gardeners to squeeze in as much as possible and allows for the most productive use of the space available to them. Remember though, when interplanting be sure to pick plants or produce which won’t crowd each other out otherwise you just make more work for yourself when it comes to sorting out the resulting tangled mess.
Fake Grass Lawns
When it comes to artificial grass lawns there is mixed opinion. While some prefer the all-natural approach, others prefer the ease of installation and lack of maintenance required when it comes to artificial grass. Ultimately, it depends on where your gardening priorities lie. By installing artificial or synthetic grass lawns you drastically reduce the amount of time you have to spend tending to natural grass which is easily damaged by children, pets or the weather. What’s more, you can dedicate more time to your vegetable gardens and flower beds and be assured of a green lawn all year round. Then again, you lose out on the smell of fresh cut grass and the knowledge that it, like the rest of your garden, is the real deal. It is purely personal preference.
For the uninitiated, transplants are seeds which have been planted and left to grow for a few weeks before being replanted into your garden. Though this option is slightly more expensive than planting your own seeds from scratch, it comes with some added benefits. Firstly, they are more resilient to certain kinds of garden pest as they are past the seedling and sprouting stage. Secondly, and perhaps most notably, transplants tend to produce fruit or flowers quicker than seeds which have grown up in that plot of soil. This is ideal for those who want to get a quick result before the weather changes.
The clue is in the name. This method applies mostly to vegetables and other produce and basically entails planting different kinds of produce in rapid succession. When one crop has ripened, plant another as you harvest them and repeat as necessary. This method allows for you to make the most out growing seasons and allows you to make best use of your vegetable patches. However, be sure to take into account growing times when implementing this strategy, as time management will allow for the greatest variety of produce.