DIY Tips for keeping your garden healthy

DIY Tips for keeping your garden healthy

Home improvement doesn't just refer to the home itself, but to the outdoor areas of your property as well. Having a well-maintained garden adds plenty of value to a property, as well as making for a better living experience in general.

Tending a garden involves more than just pouring some water over the plants every now and then. As a gardener, you'll need to be willing to literally get your hands dirty. Your plant kingdom depends on you for survival, for you are both the giver of water and the destroyer of weeds. So with that in mind, here are a few garden maintenance tips for those looking to spend some time outdoors.

Water the plants

Too much water means death by drowning, while too little means death from thirst. Everyone knows you need to water plants, but the trick is finding the right balance. According to Planet Natural, there are a few signs that will let you know you're doing it wrong:

• Symptoms of overwatering include soaked soil around the stem of the plant, moss or mould growing on the surface of the soil and yellowish leaf margins.

• Symptoms of under-watering include brown or dead leaves and plants growing slowly.

If you have a large garden, consider automatic irrigation systems as opposed to sprinkler systems, as they will allow you to better target your watering and conserve water in the process.

It's best to water the plants in the morning or evening, so they will already have soaked up some of the moisture by afternoon when the day is hottest. The BBC also suggests watering less frequently but more thoroughly, so that the plants develop root systems that are more efficient at drawing moisture out of the soil.

Feed the soil

Remember that plants need nutrients just as much as they need water. Their preferred foods include compost, manure and leaf mould (a mixture made from fallen leaves). Always give them a bountiful supply of organic materials.

Guard the garden

Weeds threaten to strangle your plants at every opportunity, while dead vegetation provides a nesting ground for pests that wreak havoc on your budding garden. You can provide protection by removing dead vegetation and ripping out any weeds before they grow to choke the life out of your flowers. Regularly cutting your lawn will also help keep any unwelcome invaders out.

Sharpen your tools

Dedicated gardeners keep their tools in good condition. Here are some tool maintenance tips:

• Ensure they are regularly disinfected so that no harmful bacteria can be passed onto the plants.

• Regularly spray the tools with general-purpose oil to prevent rust

• Purchase a special sharpening stone from a nursery to keep your blades sharp.

• Regularly inspect the tools. Blades that are too worn should be replaced. Tools that are damaged should be repaired by a professional.

A neat garden can provide hours of peace, serenity, pride and relaxation. It can also add to the value of your property, so it works on both the short- and long-term.

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