Everyone wants their garden to be at its best all year round, but it’s not always an easy goal to achieve. Keeping your garden in great shape takes a bit of time and effort, but if you are willing to put in the required work, the results are well worth it.
These tips will help you keep your garden healthy and strong.
1. Always Get The Soil Tested
The soil is the main thing that determines how healthy your garden will grow. Healthy soil equals healthy plants, and obviously the inverse is just as true.
A soil test, when conducted properly, will involve taking samples from various spots around the garden (hint: make a map grid first, and label your specimens according to which grid sector they were extracted from).
What you want to know is the soil composition (ratio of sand, loam, and clay), nutritional profile, and pH balance.
Knowing these things will give you insight on how well suited the soil is to what you intend to grow, and also help you make corrections so you can grow what you want.
Acidic soil is definitely something you'll want to correct, because weeds thrive in acidic soils, and correcting the pH balance is more effective than any chemical herbicide weed control solutions, not to mention much safer for you and your plants.
2. Keep the Soil Loose and Workable
The longer soil is just left sitting around, the more compact it will become. This makes it difficult to work with and also makes it more difficult for your plants to grow. Compact soil doesn't breathe, allowing anaerobic bacteria more opportunity to attack your plants, and these same bacteria can also generate unpleasant smells.
3. Choose Plants That Are Appropriate For The Location
Plants are sensitive to the environment they're grown in. Choosing plants that are suited to the local climate is generally the best option. For example, Ireland has a cool climate with significant rainfall for much of the year, so native European species will be most likely to flourish. Plants from the Australian outback or Mexican desert could be expected to do considerably less well in these conditions.
4. Give Sensitive Plants Protection
Some plants do not handle frost or windy conditions well, and it can be prudent to provide them with some protective measures. Buildings and hedges can provide a wind break, and also provide some frost protection.
Likewise, if you are clever about the way you plant, these same things can provide protection from excessive sunlight.
5. Give Every Plant Sufficient Room to Grow
Like children, plants need a bit of space to stretch out. If you put your plants too close together, they can't reach their full potential. Sometimes it can be prudent to get in there and thin out your crop by removing plants that are causing crowding.
6. Use Mulch
Mulch may not sound like much, but it does a valuable job in the garden. It helps to prevent excess moisture loss, protects the stems and roots of plants from rot, and also helps provide some insulation from the ravages of sun and frost.
Gardening should never feel like a chore. If you get your planning right and you work sensibly, it really doesn't have to be difficult. Enjoy your garden; take care of it, and it will reward you in many different ways.