Get a jump start on the basics of the growing season with this simple beginner's guide to planting flowers.
Do you want to bring some colorful life into your yard but have no idea how to start? Planting flowers can be intimidating for the beginner gardener, but it doesn’t have to be. This ultimate beginner’s guide will show you the basics of planting flowers, cultivating your dirt and basic water maintenance.
Whether you’re a beginning gardener or an experienced plant lover who wants to learn more about growing beautiful flowers, this article provides the information you need to get started. Get your hands dirty and take advantage of the arresting beauty of the vibrant colors and sweet scents of flower plants.
Planting a flower bed is so simple, anyone can do it! Not to mention, the most gorgeous and abundant flower gardening beds are the result. Here are a few things to consider before we get into flower planting basics.
Factors to Consider:
- When to plant - this will be based on where you live. For many of us, early spring is the best time to plant a new garden. However, early fall can be a good time to add in bulbs for spring or early summer arrival.
- Types of flowers to plant - It's a good idea to be cautious when choosing your beautiful blooms. Get the right type for the right area of your yard. For example, you don't want a flower that requires mostly shade to planted in an area that receives full sun all day.
- Water conditions - think about the water conditions of where you live. If you are in more of a desert climate and restricted on watering, choose a plant selection that reflects those limitations.
And don't worry if you don't know this information - most flowers and plants at your local garden center or nursery will say this on the tags or packaging.
Helpful Garden Tools for Planting Basics
Here are some basic tools that I use on the regular
- Hand trowel or spade
- Miracle Gro
- Garden fork or hoe - to turn your dirt
- Knee garden pad
- Garden gloves
- Rake - for smoothing out your bed after turning your dirt
- Grampa's weeder - my favorite weeding tool that doesn't break your back
Beginner's Guide to Planting Flowers
Soil preparation is key when beginning your new flower garden, or even bringing life to your existing flower bed. The best way to begin preparing your soil surface is to turn the dirt so it is soft to work with. This will allow for the plant roots to spread easier and grow. And it is especially helpful when your soil has been compacted down over the winter.
It will also make it easier to pull out any weeds that may have been hard because of tough or dry soil. Any kind of garden fork, hoe, or cultivator are great for this. When you have turned the dirt, take a rake and smooth out the dirt for a level finish so you don't have mass clumps in random places.
A good soil and optimal growing conditions can make all the difference when aiming for healthy plants. If you feel that your soil is lacking in nutrition, you can also mix in a compost to aid in plant growth.
Prepare Flowers for Planting
Lay your new plants out and put them in a fun pattern or garden design. I get the best results when I choose a variety of color and group them together. It's also nice to have different flowers that are perennial plants as well as annual flowers.
The tags or packages will usually say how far apart to plant each flower. I like to plant my flowers a little closer together than specified on the tag to create a look that is more full.
Dig the Hole
Use a small hand spade to dig a hole for your plant. Make sure to dig your hole deep enough to cover all your roots. A great way to check this is to put either the container or the flower in the hole before you plant. If your roots are just below the top level of soil, you are good to go!
For the next step, you'll want to add some extra nutrients by using fertilizer to encourage a healthy soil. Add a small amount of fertilizer at the base of the roots when planting. Most packages will tell you how much you need to use. I use Doctor Earth Starter Fertilizer. This is an organic fertilizer that is safe for people and pets!
Just sprinkle a little bit at the base - but remember, less is more with fertilizer. You don't want to end up with plant burn from too much fertilizer. This can also kill your plants if overdone.
Fill the Hole
Make sure to fill in enough dirt that all of the roots are covered, leaving just the green stems and flowers showing at the top. Pack the soil well, but not so much that you break the stems.
Watering and Miracle Gro
Most flowers really just need a few things to grow - the most important thing being a good water source and sunlight. Water your flowers daily if you can, especially in the heat of summer. On very hot days I will water a second time by hand later in the evening. It's very hard to overwater plants, especially in summer with the hours of sunlight and heat.
I like to give my flowers a little extra nutrition so I add Miracle Gro once a week. Fertilizing once doesn't give annuals enough food for their growth cycle. This is why I fertilize once and then use Miracle Gro once a week, so they can get all the nutrients boosts they need.
A successful flower-planting endeavor can be achieved with the right knowledge. Knowing which flowers thrive in which climate, the correct spacing, and the proper depth to plant the seeds are key components to creating a flourishing garden.
However, with the tips discussed in this beginner’s guide, everyone can look forward to a vibrant and beautiful garden. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different flowers and their combinations as you create your own special garden. The possibilities are limitless when it comes to planting flowers, and there is no better time to start than now. So, don’t wait, get your hands dirty and start planting the garden of your dreams today.
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