Smart gardening tips for beginners

Everybody wants to have a beautiful outdoor space they can call home, but sometimes inexperienced gardeners are intimidated by the cost or level of expertise they think is needed to get the job done. Read on for some solid pointers about getting your garden started.

Smart gardening tips for beginners

Weeding

If, like everybody, you hate weeding, put newspaper under your mulch. This reduces weed growth. Not only do you avoid, or at least diminish, this unpleasant task, but the newspaper is also biodegradable, so it doesn't damage the soil or the environment.

Planting roses

Each year you can continue to add new flower beds to your gardens. If you want to add a rose garden on the side of the house, dig up all the soil by hand and buy all your roses on sale. It'll be a beautiful addition, and it doesn't cost a small fortune.

Garden paths

To save money, you can use grass garden paths instead of paved paths. They look great. And for decoration, why not have the kids make a few stepping stones out of concrete? They can even imprint them with their handprint and adorn the coloured stone with artwork. It can be a great art project for them and adds a fun and personal touch to the garden.

Create healthy soil

Add lots of mulch and dig in organic matter. If you need help to start with, buy certified organic soil treatments and manures from your local nursery.

Encourage biodiversity

Plant many different species and intermingle them.

Rotate crops

In order not to deplete soil fertility and to reduce the build-up of diseases, don't grow the same annuals, plants and vegetables in the same place year after year.

Understand the terrain

Choose plants suitable for the soil, climate and aspect of your area.

Use natural pest control

Use organic controls so that natural pest predators can find their place in the garden. Don't use chemicals at the first sign of insect infestation, and learn to tolerate some damage to your plants. In time, your garden will evolve into a balanced ecosystem.

You can do it!

You may be a little daunted by the task of creating a professional-looking landscape on a small budget. But in the end, you can meet the challenge. It's so gratifying to have a garden that looks like a million dollars, but doesn't cost anywhere near that much to create!

Accept that in nature nothing is perfect, that some untidiness is natural and that mistakes and losses are an inevitable part of achieving a natural balance in your garden.

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