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10 New Year resolutions for gardeners

It’s all too easy to make New Year resolutions. Unfortunately it’s even easier to break them. We all have grand plans for our gardens, but we often fail to translate those grand plans into reality. The problem is often that our plans and expectations are simply unrealistic. If we kept our resolutions simpler and kept our expectations in check, then perhaps they might actually come to fruition. So, what resolutions should gardeners be making this New Year? Well, here are Ladybrook Nursery’s simple tips of a successful and fulfilling 2016.

Try to avoid creating a garden that demands more time and maintenance than you’re prepared to put in

Gardening should be fun and it should be fulfilling; so make sure your garden only requires as much maintenance time and effort as you have to give. If you want a garden that requires the minimum maintenance, then lawns, large vegetable gardens and flowerbeds are maybe not right for you.

Only heed gardening advice that is appropriate for your area

There is a wealth of gardening information available both online and offline. Unfortunately not all of it will be relevant for your garden. Some plants may grow well in certain geographical locations, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll do well in your garden. So always look for gardening information that is relevant for your region.

Keep one step ahead of the weeds

Dealing with weeds is an unavoidable part of garden upkeep, but they can be managed. Our advice is simply this: don’t let weeds get out of hand- take control.

Make better use of mulches

Mulches, like straw, leaves, dry grass clippings, ground bark and wood products are the best, first- line defence in controlling weeds in beds. Mulches also conserve soil moisture, reduce the need for watering, look attractive, prevent soil compaction and moderate soil temperatures.

Get your soil tested

Soil testing can help you make the better gardening decisions. Test results can indicate what fertilizers are needed, and knowing the soil pH can help with plant selection.

Grow something you can eat this year

Gardening can be satisfying at all times, but there’s a special satisfaction that comes from producing food for your family from the garden. Flowers may nourish the soul, but the body needs feeding too.

Take better care of your garden tools

I must admit, I’m truly the worst at taking care of my tools. If well-maintained, good quality garden tools should last for many years. So keep tools well away from rust-inducing moisture, keep them sharpened, and occasionally apply a coat of oil.

Try a few new plants out in the garden

Trying new plants is part of the fun of gardening. But be sure to go online or consult with local horticulturists to find out about the plant before you plant it.

Start a compost pile

Nothing beats biologically active homemade compost for garden bed preparation or putting together potting mixes. Composting is not complicated; you can create your own compost using nothing more than grass clippings, leaves and other landscape waste. Store in an out-of-the-way area and allow it to decay naturally.

Spend more time simply sitting and enjoying the garden

Your garden doesn’t have to look like something on a gardening magazine cover. The garden is meant to be enjoyed. So relax, touch the leaves and smell the flowers and spend more time enjoying what you’ve created.

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