Although most new gardeners are totally fired up with enthusiasm about their garden, it is often hard for them to decide exactly what to do first. If you find yourself in this situation, take a look at this simple guide on how to start your home garden and pick up a few ideas on how you can proceed with your new undertaking in a more organized manner.
1. Have a general plan.
Have a vision of how you want your garden to look and what plants it will have when you get all the planting done and everything is blooming. Browsing through magazines will help build this image.
Once this is done, you can decide where you will start working earnestly. Some gardeners like to plot their entire garden into grid some a grid so they can proceed with gardening according to a physical plan.
2. Assess your site.
Once you have a mental picture of how your garden will look, find out which areas have full sun, which areas only have morning sun, and which areas are shady. Make a sketch (a very elementary one will do) of your property and map the areas out according to the amount of sunshine they get. Pay attention to where the water drains in your garden; this will be a very important factor to consider when you put your plants in.
3. Prepare your soil.
Preparing the soil of your garden is a two-part task. Your first chore will be to clean it up; remove all the weeds, mow the grass, rake any fallen leaves, and get rid of any debris that may be lying around. Soil preparation also means getting rid of old, unproductive plants that do not fit into your plan.
After you’ve cleaned up, it’s time to improve the soil in areas that you will put your new plants in. Select the particular space you want to start working on and give it the benefit of some good hummus made from composted leaves and manure.
See to it that the area where you will be planting will drain well but retain enough moisture to nourish your plants.
4. Choose your plants.
Based on your mental picture of your garden and your knowledge of its topography, begin to select your plants. This is where you can look for plants that fit your personal image of how the garden should look. For example, if you want some hydrangeas in a corner that gets a lot of sun, take note that hydrangeas grow best when they get the morning sun but somehow get to rest in the afternoon shade. They also do best in partly dappled full sun throughout the day.
This is where you need to do some research, talk to experienced gardeners, and ask questions at the nursery where you will get your plants. This is also when you need to decide what type of gardener you want to be: someone who starts the planting cycle all over again with annuals, or one who wants to sit back and enjoy the same perennials year after year.
5. Get started.
You can start your gardening just about anywhere, and most gardeners have found that it pays to start where a mini project that will give quick rewards and a lot of impact: your front lawn. Just putting a nice edging along old beds and your driveway will give your garden a visual lift. So will trimming the hedge and getting a few shrubs started.
Gardening is a long term hobby, and very few gardeners get things exactly the way they want them right at the beginning. Go ahead and just do what you can while enjoying your garden. In time, everything will be perfect.
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