Monthly Archives: May 2016

Tips For Designing A Flower Garden

When you think of a garden, one of the first images to come to mind is usually that of flowers. It’s hard to imagine a garden without flowers, although gardens without blooms do exist. If you intend to plant a flower garden, it is essential to have a design plan and preferably a long-term planting plan as well. After all you don’t want a garden that looks bereft after all the blooms are gone, do you? That is what will happen if you plant haphazardly. So, don’t be the person who buys flowering plants on a whim and then wanders about wondering where to dig the hole for the plant to go in. Be the person who knows exactly in which hole which plant is going to go in.

So first things first. Evaluate the site where you’re going to plant your flower garden and make a note of the following –

  • How much amount of sun does the site get?
  • Is the site over-exposed to windy conditions?
  • Is it close to a road?Are there any buildings nearby?
  • Are there any electricity/telephone poles or wires nearby?
  • Are there any drain pipes?
  • Is the site accessible to pets or wildlife?
  • What kind of soil does the site have?
  • What is the soil pH?
  • Is there any natural water resource close by?
  • What kind of water supply is available?
  • Consider the shape of your garden – is it long and thin or rectangular?
  • Does it have different levels?
  • Is it an enclosed courtyard garden?
  • Is it a banked garden, a seaside location, split level, square, or a corner site?

Then consider what kind of garden you would like. If you don’t have a clue, study different landscaping and flower garden designs. Visit botanical parks or other people’s gardens to see how the flower gardening design plan there works or doesn’t work. Look at magazines and websites for inspiration and visit local gardening centers and flower shows. Talk to other gardeners and ask for tips. Designs vary in different cultures and climates, so that is another aspect to consider. Japanese gardens, for example, have a more quiet, restrained feel to them than English country gardens, which again differ from the English formal gardens.

Take into consideration the house around which the garden is being planned. What is its architectural style? Your garden design should complement it, not clash. If you have a sprawling area around an old, traditional mansion, for example, you may consider a formal garden design with all the flower beds laid out in exact symmetrical order, or you could introduce a new asymmetrical concept with a wild profusion of flowers. Your personal choice of design is as important, so also the reality of whether you want a high- or low-maintenance garden.

  • Start with identification. Make a list of flowering plants you want in your garden. Note how tall the plants will eventually become and their overall spread. Referring to these notes, draw up your garden plan. You can plant in order of height, or put the tall plants in the middle.
  • Plant in a straight line or in a sweeping curve. Straight lines and curves seem to give a more coherent look than zigzag lines. But, keep in mind, there can always be exceptions to this rule
  • Plant in groups of twos, threes, fours, fives, sixes, sevens, or more. This will give you a mass of blooms and you can get the ‘riot of colors’ effect.
  • Plant groups of flowering plants of one color, but of different tints and tones.
  • Plant according to adjacent color progression.
  • Plant in a complementary color scheme.
  • Plant flowering plants with harmonizing colors together.
  • Plant in a complete, unbridled mix of colors.
  • Intersperse single, stand alone plants between clumps of coordinating plants.
  • Use an evergreen hedge as a backdrop for radiant blooms.
  • Add a focal point like a statue, bird bath, a bench, or an arbor. If you have a large garden, you can add more than one focal point.

Incorporate a winding path between flowering beds, and use taller plants or a flowering creeper on a trellis to create an interesting ‘I don’t know where this leads’ effect. If you have a pond, create a water garden with lilies and lotuses. Line the pond with rocks so it looks more natural.

Tips on Flower Gardening

There is nothing more beautiful than a colorful flower garden surrounding your front porch. The view will make you feel closer to nature and can uplift your mood at any given moment. Today, more and more people are taking up gardening as a hobby, given its therapeutic nature. Whatever be the reason, you can start your very own garden at any point in time. It is not a very difficult task, provided that you follow some tips on how to do this.

Tips on How to Start Your Own Garden

The following will reveal some simple flower gardening tips that will help make the process easier. The ideal time to start a garden is at the end of spring or just before summer kicks in. If you’re starting a garden without prior experience, you must begin with a small area before turning it into a large one. These are the points you’ll need to bear in mind while planning a garden:

Select a Location: The scorching heat during the peak hours of the afternoon sun, is not good for many flowering plants. At least six hours of light is a must, with a little shade for particular flower species. Therefore, the area chosen should be such that the right amount of sun and shade is available, by doing a little research on the type of flower you want to grow. Many people prefer a place close to a wall or fence, since it enhances the visual appearance of a garden. For adequate shade, you can plant the flowers around fenced spots, around trees, or in a similarly shady spot.

Prepare the Soil: The next thing to do, is to remove weeds that may be growing in your garden, by digging it up with a shovel. Then identify the type of soil that you have in your garden and prepare it accordingly. The best way to improve a soil’s condition for the purpose of gardening, is with the help of compost. This is because it consists of organic matter which is good for all types of plants. On sandy soil, compost and peat moss that allows adequate moisture to seep in, for proper growth of the plant. For clay soil gardens, add compost and sand in order to improve its drainage.

Selection of Plants: When you venture to a flower shop to buy flowering plants, read the tags attached to each of them. These tags contain all the relevant information related to climatic requirements and soil condition needs of the plants. You could buy only those flowering plants that are suitable for any kind of climate change, sunlight, and soil condition, to give yourself less of a hard time. There are two kinds of flowering plants: annuals and perennials. Annuals blossom only in a particular season whereas perennials bloom throughout the year. Select a good combination of annuals and perennials for your flower garden. This will ensure that your garden will have flowers all year round. You can buy seeds too to watch a flower take form, provided that you have the time and patience to care for them.

Planting the Flowers: Proper planting of the flowering plants is a must. Take the plant out from its plastic container along with the entire soil plug attached to it. If there are too many roots around the soil, loosen them up a bit so that they can get comfortably branch out in a flower bed. Then plant it in the ground, making sure the roots of the plant are not placed too deep in the soil. Otherwise, most of the water given to the plant will drain before it reaches the roots.

Watering the Plants: After planting, adequate watering is important as it will help the plant to develop a strong root system. Water should be given to the plants as per their requirements. The tags of the new plants contain valuable instructions on a plant’s needs. It is better to plant the same kinds of plants together, so that you know a certain amount of water is required in that one spot. In the first week, watering should be done every day. In the second week, it should be given after every two days. After that, once a week. If the plants are native to your area, then at a later stage you can water them just once in month.

Flower Plant Care: Mulching (using various elements directly to the soil, like wood chips, bark chips, leaves, straw mulch, woodchip mulch, peat moss, cardboard, plastic sheeting, and the like) helps stunt the rampant nature of weeds, preserves soil moisture, and improves the state of the soil. Remove dead blossoms and throw them away from the garden, since they can spread diseases to healthy neighboring plants.

Initially, you may find the task of gardening a bit strenuous, but as you watch them blossom, you will get a sense of fulfillment. With time, you’ll be experimenting with other adventurous projects like planning a vegetable or fruit garden.

Tips for Planting Daylilies

Daylilies have three petals and three sepals, together known as tepals. Planting them is easy due to their adaptable nature, little care, vigorous growth, and surviving abilities. They are one of the easiest flowers to plant in your garden as they can also survive winters with only little injury.

Planting Guide

Planting: Choose an area in your garden that receives sunlight for at least 5 to 6 hours everyday. Next, remove the roots of unwanted plants that may be present in the soil earlier. Dig out a hole in the ground that is a little bigger and wider, so that the roots can easily sit in. Mix the fertilizers in the soil. Place your plant in the hole, gather the soil around it and then, water the plant.

Soil: Daylilies grow best in soil that is well drained with a pH between 6.5 to 7, but they are so adaptable that they can actually grow in soil containing any pH. They will also grow in sandy soil as well as heavy clay soil. If your garden has heavy clay soil, you can add manure, peat moss, good compost, gypsum, etc., to make it suitable for your flowers. Adding compost or another organic material to the soil increases its nutrition value. If there is a drainage problem, raising the beds is the easiest option available.

Water: These plants grow best in early spring. But if you buy them in other seasons, save them from drought. Watering will ensure big and bright blooms. Water sufficiently in spring, and also in summer, which will help boost their growth. These plants are capable of withstanding drought, but obviously less water is going to make them dry off and wither away. Pour water up to an inch every week so that the soil soaks it up at a greater depth.

Fertilizers: If you want to know what exact nutrients your soil needs, get a soil analysis done. The soil should be fertilized every two to three weeks after plantation. If you are using chemical fertilizers, doing this twice a year is sufficient. Chemical fertilizers should be added in early spring. Mulching is one of the best ways to make the soil more fertile.

Insects: Insects such as aphids, thrips, spider mites, snails, and slugs feed on the blooming flowers and buds. These can be killed by spraying some insecticide or by simply watering with force. These insects cause discoloration and holes in the leaves. Although the insects may do minor damage to these plants, it might be difficult to tell the exact cause of any disease. Hence, it is better to consult an agricultural agent, or a local nursery.

Controlling the growth of weeds: It is very important that the weeds growing around this plant should be removed, as these weeds absorb the nutrition that is given to them.
Read more at Buzzle: http://www.buzzle.com/articles/daylilies-planting.html

Ideas to Create a Flower Garde

Whenever planting a flower garden, try to get as much advice and information as possible to get an insight on different gardening ideas. Seek advice from gardeners, get advice from different nursery owners about the best plants that should be planted in a garden, consult other garden owners on layout, and visit different gardens to pick on the dos and don’ts. One common mistake people tend to do while gardening is not providing ample space for the plants. This leads to cramped space for surrounding plants, and can also hamper the natural growth of the plants. It is important that you not only consider the surface ground area, but also the underground plant area that will be used by the plants and tree roots. Many plants propagate very fast, and can destroy other plants. Such plants should be avoided or planted in a certain specific area of the garden and should be regularly pruned.

Deciding the Layout of the Garden
Draw a top angle layout of the space you will be using for the garden, on the layout mark out the space for lawn, your residence, unmovable trees, and other objects. This way you will know how much area you need to work on. If you wish to be precise in your flower garden landscaping ideas, you can measure the free area in square feet and write it down on the layout.

Make few photocopies of this layout to try out different combinations. On different copies plan out the placement of different flower bushes, bushes for fencing, stand alone flower or trees, and hardscape elements like fencing, walkways, benches, etc. This way you can have a well-planned design for large or small flower garden. Show the copies to experienced gardeners to get a second opinion and then decide on a final copy.

Adding Fencing and Other Elements
Before you start with any softscape elements to your flower garden like flowering shrubs or bushes, plant the hardscape material. This includes structural material like fences, walls, pavings, walkways, benches, an outdoor sitting area, etc.

Stick to the above layout plan to install the hardscape elements. There are a variety of choices of the hardscape materials, like you can go for a brick, stone, or a concrete wall for a sidewalk, and metal wrought iron fencing or traditional white wooden fencing. You can also add some decorative hardscape materials like a water fountain or a garden pond.

Choosing the Flowering Plants
Always try to go for native flowering plants, as they have already adapted to the soil and weather conditions and are easier to grow. Avoid too many colors of plants, as this might spoil the look. Select flowering plants which look good and inviting and have flower colors which are not very vibrant. Choose plants which you can plant in sunny sites and plants which require shade or partial sun.

Select half the plants which bloom with flowers in summer and the rest that bloom with flowers during fall. This way you can enjoy having flowers in your flower garden year round. For ground cover, consider a lawn or plant small plants which grow evenly for a height of 1 foot. Consider the individual soil, watering, space, pruning, mulching, and fertilizer requirement of the plants well to plant and care for your flowering plants.

So, remember to seek advice on gardening and form a layout plan of the garden for a well-planned garden. Select the appropriate, beautiful-looking flowering plants and enjoy blooms during both the seasons!