Are you the type of person who thinks they have a curse on them when it comes to the world of plants?
I know what you’re thinking – it should be easy right? Some water, sunlight and a little bit of pruning. However, no matter how hard you try, through tending to it, they all seem to die.
Well it may be hard to believe but sometimes tenderness can do more harm than good.
However, fear not nature newbies, for here is my guide to helping your flora grow and not seeing another shrivelled shrub.
DON’T drown them:
This is where most of us go wrong, as we feel they need constant watering. This is often where “killed with kindness” becomes a factor, especially during the summer months.
However, much like us, taking in too much water causes the plant to drown and die, as the roots can’t absorb the excess fluid.
Having a proper irrigation system can help you to regulate your water. Provided you’re not connecting to your main supply, putting your system to a garden tap is perfectly fine. Those such as the Irritrol 205 Solenoid valve allow for manual shut off.
Timing is important. In the summer months – yes, water every day, yet depending on your system – such as a pop up sprinkler for a small lawn, maybe only for 10 mins.
In winter, water maybe only once a week.
Pay attention to the specific needs of your plants:
If you buy certain potted plants from your local nursery, often you will find a tag with a guide to the requirements your selected plants require to thrive.
Some plants, such as many Australian natives, including kangaroo paw and lily pilly require minimal watering, being adapted to the country’s arid and dry climate.
Others may not require direct sunlight and may run the risk of dying and/or drying out from direct or prolonged exposure.
Keep pests at bay:
Quite often the reason our plants die without our notice is due to pests that overrun the plants.
According to The Royal Botanic Garden Sydney , pests such as aphids and certain soil and fungal born diseases can be the cause of your plants not blooming to their full potential.
There are also certain pests that attack certain plants, such as rhododendrons, so it is best to know if you are sowing particular species of plant.
There are insects that can actually help your garden. Much like bees help to pollinate and spread the seeds, those such as lady bugs can be a natural pest control, as they love to feed on aphids.
Know the shelf life of your stock:
Having the knowledge of a certain plant’s life cycle can be gold if you want to keep them growing. It is no good growing annuals, such as marigolds, if you don’t know when to buy the seeds to replant them.
Your local nursery or a hardware store with a garden department can help you choose which plants are best, whether it be geranium seeds or herbs for your herb garden.
Learn if your plant needs a revival:
While making sure your plants don’t die is the ultimate goal, there are things, such as weather, which we can’t control. However, it is helpful to know if your plant has died, or if it has merely become dormant.
In different conditions, certain plants shut down and become less active. Lifehacker can help you to see if your plants are dead or dormant due to conditions or in fact, stress.
So there you have it, my propagating pals – some handy hints to alleviate your floral woes.