Easy to Grow Outdoor Plants for Successful Gardens
Gardening can be intimidating, but even for those that may believe otherwise, plants really aren’t out to get you! To help you along the road to success, here are a few tips to get you started.
Select healthy, robust annual plants – ones that live for a single year. Many annuals are easy to get along with and they provide bright color from late spring until the first freeze. With a few successes under your belt, you’ll soon be ready for bigger challenges.
First of all, relax and don’t kill your plants with kindness! Here are some quick and dirty tips:
- Make sure the soil is well drained, as soggy soil prevents roots from breathing. This is the number one reason for early plant death.
- Read the tag or ask at the garden center to determine the specific needs of the plant. For example, most annuals need at least six hours of sun, but some require partial shade and will bake in heat and bright light. Planting in the wrong environment is an invitation for disaster.
- Most annuals need water only when the top of the soil is dry. However, don’t let the soil become completely parched. (Again, remember to check the tag.) Remember that plants in containers dry out faster than in-ground plants.
- Feed your annuals regularly using a general-purpose, water-soluble fertilizer. Read the instructions carefully. Don’t over-feed, and always water first or you risk scorching the roots.
- If you plant in a container, be sure the pot has a drainage hole. Invest in some good quality, soil-less potting mix. Never use garden soil.
- Most plants look best and bloom much longer when you pinch off wilted blooms. This process is called deadheading, and it really makes a difference.
- Invest in a bottle of insecticidal soap spray. This will take care of aphids and most common garden pests that may attempt to feast on your posies.
Now for some easy to grow plant options you can’t go wrong with:
No-Fuss Annuals for Sun
- Moss rose (Portulaca)
Annuals for Shadier Spots
- Tuberous begonias
- Wax begonias
- Impatiens walleriana
- New Guinea impatiens