From April showers come May flowers, so it’s time once again to get our hands dirty in the garden. If the thought of trying to keep plants alive leaves you anxious and intimidated, don’t panic! We asked the experts for their green thumb tips guaranteed to give you the best blooms on the block.
Tip #1- If you’re planting in pots, make sure there’s a small hole in the bottom to let out water. This ensures the plant gets ample drainage and you never have to worry about overwatering. And, if the flowerpot is deep, put a layer of packing peanuts in the bottom. This will make the pot lighter and easier to move and save potting soil for other projects.
Tip #2- One of the most common garden pests are aphids, tiny green or black bugs that like to hide on the underside of leaves. To get rid of the little buggers, simply spray them with the garden hose or use an insecticidal soap. You can even wrap a bit of tape around your fingers – sticky side out – and pat the leaves of the infested plants.
Tip #3- To make shoveling a breeze, simply spray a garden shovel with a silicone or Teflon lubricant and the soil will slip right off. And to avoid dirt under your fingernails, try digging your nails into a bar of soap before you head outside.
Tip #4- An empty flower pot flipped upside down is perfect for covering your plants on nights when the temperature dips low enough for frost. Larger plants can be covered with fabric or old bed sheets, just avoid using plastic.
Tip #5- Kitchen scraps can do amazing things for your garden! Try grinding eggshells into a powder and sprinkling it around your plants for a calcium boost. If you steam or sautee your vegetables, save the water and use it as “fertilizer” when it cools. And next time you’re planting seedlings, put them in a citrus peel. Simply put dirt inside the peel and add the plant. The peel will provide nutrients and, when it’s time to transplant, you can simply put the whole thing into the ground or a flowerpot.
We hope these tips give you the confidence to get out there and get gardening!