So, you’ve planned your landscape, planted your seeds or seedlings, and you’re finally looking forward to enjoying the well-earned view of your beautifully kept yard. Now what? For seasoned gardeners, they know that this aspect of gardening is only just scratching the surface since maintaining a well-manicured and lovely-looking yard takes a little work and a few tools.

Plant Care Help

If you’re a newer gardener, or even if you just want a refresher, we are prepped to give you some tips on providing maintenance to your outdoor plants throughout the growing season and beyond. While every plant comes with its own set of “rules” to keep thriving, we know that general care towards a garden can reap rewards.

Two of the biggest gardening questions from first-timers are:

  1. How do I maintain my plants once planted?
  2. How do I keep them alive?

For example, if you’ve ever purchased mums in the fall for their vibrant autumnal coloring and then wondered why they withered within a couple of weeks (no judgment!), well, you’re not alone!

We’ll address a few ways you can keep your plants maintained, alive and looking great!

Water

We know – watering plants seems like a total no-brainer! Everyone knows that plants need water, but there are specific ways to properly water your plants to keep them free of disease and be able to quench their thirst.

  • Determine watering needs
    • Not every plant needs daily watering. Be sure to do your research about how much water each of your plants need before you establish a watering schedule.
  • Water on a schedule
    • Establish a schedule for watering your plants.  Make a note or mark it on your calendar which days you’ll water which plants and stick to it. 
  • Water first thing in the morning
    • Give the soil time to drink in the water before the heat of the sun begins beating down and drying things up. Early morning waterings also give you the opportunity to see if your plants are receiving enough water.
  • Check for pooling water
    • If you see areas around your plant(s) that have excess water in the mornings, then you know you’re either watering too much or, if mulched, there isn’t sufficient drainage. Thin your mulch out if that is the case and return to your watering schedule.
  • Keep an eye on heat and humidity
    • Summer months add more heat and humidity to the air than others, so it’s important to check your area’s forecast. If you see the heat index is going to increase on certain days, make a point to water a bit more often and a bit longer on those days.
  • Where to water
    • Water towards the base of the plants rather than just the leaves, blooms and upper areas. This can help prevent fungal growth and gives the plant a chance to get the necessary water it needs before evaporation. 

Weeding

Regular weeding is essential when it comes to garden maintenance. Weeds take water, sunlight, and nutrients from your other plants and can wreak havoc on your garden. Laying mulch and weeding often can help curb that before it becomes an issue.

Make use of our mulch calculator on each product page if you don’t know just how much mulch you’ll need or feel free to ask any of our trusted associates!

We even offer delivery for added peace of mind. 

Deadheading and Pruning

Keeping your plants free of withered leaves or dried blooms gives your garden ample opportunity to allocate resources where it needs to go. Rather than wasting nutrients on areas that are already dead, the plant can move energy towards new growth and focus on maintaining its life. Cutting back on areas where you see overgrowth or areas that are increasing unnecessary shade on other plants or flowers will keep them from suffering. 

Unlike watering, pruning and deadheading isn’t something you schedule. It should be part of your regular garden maintenance, but it is quick and requires little effort with a newer garden as withering and/or drying out is typically easily seen with the naked eye. 

Fertilizer

Most flowers/plants can benefit from fertilizer, whether they are indoor or outdoor, and some are better than others. Keep in mind, however, that if you’re going to be spraying fertilizer on edible plants, look out for ones that may be harmful to consume as you don’t want to ingest that (and always wash your food before eating too)! 

A good multi-purpose or overall fertilizer is a good place to start for a new gardener as it can be used on both your indoor and outdoor plants. Giving this extra push to the soil gives your plants added sustenance to grow greener leaves and stronger roots. 

Animal and Pest Control

Animals and insects love fresh fruit and vegetables as much as us, so it’s best to avoid this altogether if possible. The best way to keep animals from nibbling on your new tomatoes is by building fencing or some kind of barrier. You can also start with raised garden beds. If raising the bed wasn’t in your plan then fencing should be enough to start. 

Pesticides help keep insects at bay, but, again, look for ones that are safe for you, your kids, and your pets.

Landscaping

Don’t forget you can always refer back to your original landscape plan and map for guidance on general maintenance if you are feeling stumped. Annuals and perennials needs may change with the seasons, for instance so be sure to check on them often.

Your landscape plan can assist you in recalling basic needs or simply aid as a map on the best route to take with upkeep. 

Visiting your garden regularly will give you the upper hand in spotting signs of fungus, disease, wilting, withering, or animal presence quickly so you can take action!

Whether you’re a seasoned gardener or dipping your toe in for the first time, be sure that your plants receive lots of care and attention. Follow the guidelines above and you’ll be well on your way to earning green thumb status!