How to Have a Healthy ‘Green’ Garden

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Spring has sprung! To celebrate the season, here are seven smart planting tips from the webbiest green thumbs 

1. Know what to plant: Pick the right plant — those that need little water and are generally pest-free. (Sickly plants? Toss ‘em.) Then mulch, mulch, mulch to reduce weeds, feed the soil and retain moisture. —Susan Harris, GardenRant and Sustainable-Gardening

 

2. Plant for preference: Read the plant tag and put plants where they want to grow — sun lovers in the sun, shade lovers in the shade, xeric plants where it’s dry, thirsty plants where it stays damp. You’ll spend less time with a hose in your hand, and your plants will be healthier and less susceptible to disease, fungus or insects. —Pamela Penick, founder of Digging and Penick Landscape Design

3. Go back to the ‘roots’ of gardening: In the old days, gardens weren’t a recreational pastime like they are today. People grew plants and trees for food, medicine, fragrance and dyes, often in very small spaces. And they didn’t use any pesticides. Having a healthy “green” garden simply involves grouping plants according to their needs (sun, water, spacing, etc.), using mulch to keep roots cool and competing weeds down, fertilizing appropriately and doing routine maintenance. —Patricia Blais, creator and author of Gardensablaze.com

4. Let your plants defend themselves: A healthy green garden is a sustainable garden that  is not dependent on chemical fertilizers or insecticides to thrive. A green garden uses plants that adapt easily to the soil conditions of the area, and that are planted in the right sun exposure. Sun plants in the sun, shade plants in the shade. Placing plants in their ideal growing environment gives them a fighting chance against pests and diseases. Also, seek out “organic-based” products first before reaching for chemical solutions for a healthy green garden. —Shirley Bovshow, garden design expert and blogger at ShirleysGarden.com, EdenMakers.com and GardencenterTV.com

5. Mulch more, water less: Using a thick layer of organic mulch in the form of grass clippings, shredded leaves or even straw is the best way to have a healthy green garden. —Cynthia Thompson, author of Brambleberries in the Rain

6. Forgo exotic plants: Put native and indigenous plants in your garden. For example, if you live in Arizona, try planting a cactus garden; in Western Colorado, try more water-conservative plants. These native plants are already adapted to your local climate making them easier to grow and maintain and require less fertilizer and water. —Jennifer L. Scott, aka “Miss Daisy,” executive assistant for Fusion-io and founder of Gardening With Miss Daisy

7. Go native! The best way to go “green” in both connotations — avoiding crunchy, brown, dead plants and being a responsible steward of the environment — is to use native plants in your landscape. They are best adapted to your climate and help provide habitats for wildlife. —Jessica, author of The Garden Blog of a girl growin’ Southern

One comment so far.

  1. avatar SMALL TOWN GIRL says:

    I have my summer vegies planted as I do every year
    Cherry Tomatoes
    Better Boy Tomatoes
    green peppers
    cucumbers
    radishes
    pumpkins                                                                                                                                                                       love watching them grow and eating the best tomatoes is one of the best parts of summer