Planting Your Seeds

Hello again my fellow green-thumbed gardeners! In my last post I took a look at how to choose your plants and today it’s time to discuss the next stage – what to do now that you’ve purchased your seeds and plotted out what you’ll plant. Assuming that you have chosen a spot in your garden with nice soil and nourished it with compost (I keep a compost heap in my back garden, using it for my plants is a wonderful way to avoid wasting food), it’s time to get stuck in! Most seeds are not that resilient so generally you should plant them when there is no fear of frost. This means that depending on the plant or flower, the middle or spring or autumn are the best times to begin. Easy to grow plants Taking my garden for example, one of the things I have planted is lettuce. Lettuce is particularly easy to grow right from the seed and so I thought it would be a great choice for a beginner gardener like me. Back in May last year I planted the seeds half-an-inch deep and made sure they were covered with soil and thoroughly watered. More fragile plants like tomatoes are easier to care for if you purchase a young plant, rather than trying to grow them from a seed. These are called transplants or set plants. In this case, I simply picked up a young tomato plant and set it directly into the hole I dug for […]

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Gardening Basics: Choosing Plants

Welcome back to my gardening blog! Today it’s time to decide what you’re going to plant. Different plants have different needs and it’s worth spending some time considering what goes together so that you have a successful garden. Plan your garden Step one is to map out your garden and decide what will fit – a simple flowerbed with two or three varieties might work best or you could do as I have and go for five or so types of vegetables bordered by herbs. Try to choose plants that require similar maintenance so that you can take care of them all at once. As I mentioned in my last post, I have planted a vegetable garden and I hope it lasts for many years. If you have chosen flowers, bear in mind that some are annual varieties which will bloom just once but look wonderfully colorful all summer, while others are perennials which bloom for a shorter time but will return each year. You should also take a look at the space you have and the type of soil. I began by clearing away the sod (that’s the top layer) covering my garden and adding a layer of compost to the soil. I used a spade to mix this in to the first 10 or so inches of soil, it’s best to do this to fairly damp earth in the spring. This gave it the much-needed nutrient boost that should help my plants to prosper. Sunshine is key to […]

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The Self-Taught Gardener – Starting Out

Hello and welcome to my gardening blog. Like the name suggests, I’m a self-taught nature enthusiast who loves to watch things sprout and grow. There’s nothing I enjoy more than taking a plant from seed to harvest and I hope to share that pleasure with you. With that in mind, for my first post I thought it would be a good idea to start with the basics – any plan should start ‘from the ground up’! It’s important to begin your garden with the following things in mind otherwise things can get a little bit hectic. So grab a sheet of paper and let’s plot things out: Pretty or Practical First things first, do you want a simple flower garden to sit in or a vegetable patch that will yield bountiful rewards? Both require some work but there is just a touch more effort involved in the average vegetable garden. Personally, I enjoy having something to show for my efforts so I have been spending the summer taking care of a small patch of fruits and veggies and I’m looking forward to enjoying the result. It might not be much but I’d rather have some potatoes and herbs than take care of roses. This is just a matter of individual taste, what do you enjoy? Time and Space Honestly evaluate the kind of time you can commit to your garden. Remember, this is supposed to be relaxing and so there is zero point in over-burdening yourself! If you have a […]

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