Perhaps you have purchased your first home and your neighbors are encouraging you to grow a garden. If you are a neophyte to the endeavor, then it is not uncommon if you offer a kindly response to the idea, but continue with your reluctance.
Gardening can be a hefty hobby for beginners who aren’t inclined to pursue it. And, if you come from a family of non-gardeners, then your reluctance to pursue the endeavor may be even greater. You may be less inclined to take on the activity because you don’t know much about it.
However if you are looking for a hobby that could feed your passions and help develop strong friendships in the neighborhood you may want to think about testing the waters.
If you start off slow and let your future friends know that you are new to this, then I bet they will be happy to provide you with assistance in getting started.
There are plenty of books and articles on the subject that you can also turn to that will give you the confidence you need to take the plunge. Getting a jump start with gardening knowledge with some is smart thinking.
Some Basics For Beginners To Get Started
As you begin the new hobby, it is best to keep things simple. Start off creating a small container garden that includes hanging baskets. The cost of this small project is miniscule. You may even have the materials you need already. The things you need include:
- Sturdy baskets
- Hooks and wires
- Fresh moss
- A saucer
- Soil and nutrients
Purchase Basic Gardening Tools For Beginners
Of course, you will need tools to garden. These tools should include:
- Pruning scissors to cut back plants and bushes. These scissors will also help ensure that the plants stay healthy when you use them to cut off dead flower heads and branches. You should also purchase a pair of lopping pruners with long handles and large blades to cut larger, well established plants.
- For digging purposes you’ll need a spade, a trowel, and a garden fork. The spade and trowel are for digging holes where you can install the plants. The garden fork is ideal for breaking up clumps of soil or removing roots of old plants and weeds. You’ll also need a rake with metal prongs and another rake with softer, plastic prongs. The metal rake is used to level the soil and remove stones. The plastic rake is for cleaning away leaves from your lawn.
- To assist in watering the plants, you’ll need a garden hose and watering can.
- Finally, you’ll need a forked trowel and gardening knife to deal with the weeds.
Creating The Basket Garden
Line the basket with the cardboard or with fresh moss. Place the saucer at the bottom of the basket to stop water from draining out. Go to a nursery to consult with experts to help you decide what plants to place in the baskets. Keep in mind that the plants you select depends on the amount of sunlight they will get. If you plan to hang the baskets where they get direct sunlight, choose plants that thrive in this condition. If you choose to put some baskets in the shade, then select plants that thrive in shade.
Buy good potting soil and the proper plant food and nutrients to help the plants thrive.
Fill the baskets with some of the potted soil and a little of the nutrients and mix moisture-controlling compost that includes slow release plant foods with the soil. Install a plant in each basket and feed the plants nutrients each week.
How Beginners Can Create A Full Garden
We’ve already discussed the tools you’ll need to maintain a full garden.
Next, you will need to decide the type of garden you want to grow. You can get some ideas from gardening magazines and from your neighbors.
Once you’ve determined the type of garden, you will need to check the soil. Perform a soil test to determine the amount of nutrients there are in the soil, whether it is sand or clay, and its pH level. The information you receive from the test will help you select the right plants for the soil you have.
Work compost into the top 8-inches to 12-inches of the soil with a spade or fork to improve it. The best time to do this is during the winter or in the beginning of spring.
If time isn’t an issue and you don’t want to turn soil to mix in the compost, then there is another alternative of improving soil quality. No digging is required.
Mark out the area of the plant bed and cover the ground in five layers of newspaper.
Next, cover the area with 2-inches to 3-inches of compost and leave it alone for at least four months. The newspaper will decompose and the nutrients from the compost will mix in with the soil.
The next step in the process of creating a full garden involves planning.
Determine where each plant will go. Pay particular attention to the spacing between each plant. Allowing space in which each plant can grow you’re assured that their growth is not stunted and they will not be susceptible to diseases.
Remove soil from the ground to use when you install the plants.
Start off with young plants. Be aware that these plants are delicate and are easy to damage. So take precautions with them. The plant you buy will come in its own pot. Don’t try to remove them by grapping at the stem and pulling them out.
Instead, turn the plant upside down and press the underside of the pot until the plant and soil slides out.
Dig a hole in the plant bed deep and wide enough to contain the roots. Place the plant in the hole and fill it in with the soil that you had collected earlier. Once all the plants have been placed, water them thoroughly.
Beginners should be careful not to overwater. Water the plants slowly so the water can seep through the soil to the roots. If watered properly, the soil will feel moist about 2-inches to 3-inches beneath the surface.
Also be aware that plants at different stages of development will need different amounts of water. Young plants need water daily. Established plants need watering once every two to three days.