We all know there are no real guarantees in life. But if we do the right things in the right way we at least have a decent chance, right? Okay, so in terms of planting a garden, what are the things we can do to give us that decent chance for a guarantee? The first and one of the most essential elements of a successful garden in choosing the right plant for the right place. If you have a shady backyard and plant sun loving plants, you are doomed from the get go. Or, if you want to save water, donít plant water loving plants. I know it seems obvious, but havenít we all lost plants because of these mistakes?
The second thing we need to consider is the soil. It is the rare garden that has that beautiful rich sandy loam that is the gold standard of soil. First we may need to add amendments to our soil to get it to the best possible texture. Adding organic material such as planting mix or compost will help sandy soil retain moisture longer and will help clay soil become looser so it doesnít get compacted when it dries out. In addition to creating the right soil texture, we have to supply nutrients to our plants. When installing your plants, add some timed release fertilizer so the plants get off to a healthy start. The only plants that donít need extra feeding are the California natives.
Okay, so now we have the plant in the right place in the right soil. The next crucial step is the irrigation. There are benefits to hand watering. For one thing you have constant contact with your plants and can see what is going on with them on a daily basis. But most of us really donít have the time to hand water. It is a very good investment to put in an irrigation system. A sprinkler system is one choice, and you can have several zones to accommodate the different areas in your yard that have different water needs. A drip irrigation system is another option that delivers water directly to each plant. Get a system that you feel comfortable with and know how to program so you can adjust the timing for the season.
So now that your plants are installed in your garden all you have to do now is feed and care for them. A useful tool to help you keep track of this is a garden calendar. Once you learn what roses like for example, enter the information into your computer or a notebook and then refer to it month by month. Then you will know what to feed it or when to cut it back.
You still may not have a 100% guarantee, but you will be one step closer to the perfection you aim for in your garden.