Flower Gardening Basics

Hollyhocks along the garden path
Hollyhocks along the garden path

Flower gardening is fun. Working in the garden can bring great personal satisfaction. Here are a few suggestions to get the most out of gardening.

Invest in Your Soil

Spend time and money improving your garden soil. Plants grow best in loose, rich, well-drained soil. Aged compost or commercial organic planting mix will improve all soils. Work compost or planting mix into the soil at least a spade’s depth about 12 inches/30 cm. Remove all rocks and debris from the planting bed.

Put the Right Plant in the Right Place

Choose plants that are well-suited to your climate and region. Check the USDA Zone or temperature requirements for the plants you want to set in the garden. Check container levels or plant descriptions. What are the sun and water requirements? Make sure your plant is going to the right spot in the garden.

Visit Your Garden Every Day

Visiting your garden regularly is the best way to know how plants are doing. Regular visits to the garden will help you spot problems and quickly correct them. If each plant is in the right spot, you will likely see no problems at all.

Perennial asters (Aster amellus) also called European Michaelmas daisy
Perennial asters (Aster amellus) also called European Michaelmas daisy

Learn and Plan

Read about plants—the ones you are growing and the ones you would like to grow. Do a bit of research; read the plant profiles here at Garden Chronicle, read plant and seed catalogs, browse the web. Collect ideas and keep a notebook.

Be Patient

Garden is a process. It takes time—days, week, months, and even years. Be patient with yourself. Experience is the best teacher. If you have success jot a note in your garden diary. If you experience plant failure, play the detective; every problem can be solved. Experience will teach you.

Read Instructions

Read plant labels. Read plant packages. Read the instructions. Read seed and plant catalogs, read garden books, browse the web; read plant profiles and how-to articles here at Garden Chronicle.

Relax and Have Fun

It’s a garden. Enjoy!

African Daisy Arctotis

Understanding Plant Names

Holly berries in winter

Cold-Climate Flower Gardening