Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Garden Troubleshooting 101

Growing your own is incredibly rewarding. It’s a hobby that keeps you fit, gets you outside, and best of all you get to reap the rewards whether it’s with tasty fruits, vegetables, and herbs to eat or gorgeous plants and flowers to look at. But gardening can be tricky, it’s not just a case of sprinkling down a few seeds and hoping for the best. For your crops to do well, you need to provide the right kind of environment for growth. If you’ve given it a go but aren’t having much luck, here are some of the places you might be going wrong.

Your Soil Isn’t Right
The right soil is absolutely crucial, and unfortunately, it’s not a ‘one size fits all.' Some plants prefer light, sandy and free draining soils. Others prefer those which are heavier with more moisture. Some prefer acidic soils, some neutral and some alkaline. You can’t really guess at these things, before sowing your seeds or planting things up, do some research. Work out what kind of soil each different type of plant needs.

It’s The Wrong Climate or Weather
Certain plants are adapted to certain climates, meaning there are some things that you will simply not be able to grow where you live (without a lot of intervention with things like greenhouse temperature). Even things that usually thrive in the country where you live might have trouble if you have a year that's particularly warm/cold/dry/wet. You need to work out what climate zone you’re in, as this will give you an idea of the things you can realistically grow. And if you’ve had bad luck with a certain crop (that you know grows in your climate) give it another go the following year. You might have just got unlucky with the temperature, rainfall or something else.

They Haven’t Pollinated
In the cases of fruit trees, they will only bear fruit if they have been pollinated by another type. So for example you would need to different varieties of apple trees nearby to each other for them to begin producing apples. If you’ve owned a fruit tree for years that has never bore fruit, this is probably why. If you don’t have a whole lot of space, you can buy self-fertile trees these days from sites like https://www.chrisbowers.co.uk. The hard work is already done for you, simply give it the right conditions and you’ll get a great harvest year in, year out.

Your Plants are Competing
If you’ve set up a vegetable patch without much planning, you could end up with different vegetables that are competing for the same nutrients. For this reason, one (or both) could suffer. You need to do plenty of research before setting up your patch, some vegetables are good ‘companions’ and can ward off pests from other plants, whereas others will simply compete and never do as well as they should.

What problems have you encountered in the garden?

11 Smart Readers SAID::

Our Family World said...

I have a green thumb and I love spending hours in the garden. It makes me happy to see my plants sprout up from the ground. I have not heard of self fertile trees though. I will have to check on that. Thanks for this post.

travelpogi said...

i love spending time in my garden too! my kids enjoy it well, they watering the plants while playing!
-Kelly REci

Unknown said...

Very helpful! We are trying to get our garden started, and I do not have a green thumb. I just realized that sometimes plants compete with each other and can hurt each other's growth (as you mentioned above). I need to definitely do more research to get my poor little garden to survive.

Unknown said...

My mom loves spending time in garden. She enjoys planting new plants, watering them and nourishing them.

Terri Beavers said...

I've been making some container gardens this summer. I never even realized I'd need two different plants to pollinate them.

Coralie said...

This is good to know. We just moved into a new house so I will have to watch for these as my plants grow.

Jenny said...

I would love a fruit tree in my yard, but we're trying to revamp the backyard and as of now, we have no room for one :(

mail4rosey said...

This is good advice. I didn't know plants could compete, but that does make sense.

Elizabeth O. said...

Gardening is definitely rewarding and it's the best way to get the veggies that you love without spending too much money. I agree with all of these factors, there's more to gardening than planting a seed, definitely.

Carol Cassara said...

Growing my own herbs has always been fun. I'd love to expand and grow my own veggies too. I have yet to do that and this is really helpful.

Ron Leyba said...

I would love to have my own garden too, soon! Would love to grow some plants on pots. Thanks for this article!

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