Get Ready For Gardening Success (2)
Garden tip from San Diego Ace Hardware
San Diego Ace Hardware stores are the one-stop shops that have much more than just hardware. The variety of merchandise stocked includes such items as kitchen gadgets, small appliances, pet supplies, bath accessories and home organization. Trained specialists are always on hand to provide helpful advice to ensure the success of your home projects.
It is time to make the necessary preparations to have a healthy, beautiful yard this year. Success in the garden includes proper soil cultivation and improvement, pest control, pruning and irrigation well before new plant growth emerges. By following the listed procedures faithfully each year, you will be rewarded with an even better lawn and yard than you imagined.
Test the soil — This easy but usually overlooked step will reveal the needs your soil has for improvement. For example, the pH level indicates the acidity or alkalinity of the soil; that will dictate the types of plants that will grow best in a particular location.
Amend and cultivate soil — Heavily compacted soil hinders the health of plants. They prefer well-drained, loamy soil. Add compost to flower, shrub and vegetable beds and turn over or till the soil to break it up. Aerate lawns using equipment designed for that purpose.
Fertilize properly — Lawns, shrubs, trees, flowers and vegetables each have specific requirements. Soil conditions (based on testing) also dictate specific needs. Fertilizing too little, too frequently or at the wrong time will have a negative result.
Control pests and diseases — Indiscriminant spraying and dusting of pesticides can be harmful to plants, pets and humans. Pesticides are formulated for specific purposes and should be used only as recommended on the product’s label. As a first step, determine what pests or diseases your plants have.
Irrigate — Plants are like people when it comes to water. Too little and they dehydrate; too much and they drown. As a general rule, most plants prefer water at their “feet,” not on their “heads.” So, water at soil level, not by overhead spraying an entire bed. It is important to know when to water. An inexpensive moisture meter can be used to indicate the need. Simply push the prong into the soil to various depths around a plant and read the meter.
Mulch — Covering a soil bed with the proper mulch will retain moisture to benefit plants and maintain better soil conditioning.
Prune selectively — Some plants prefer pruning in early spring, while others can be trimmed during summer or fall. Generally, anything that flowers in the spring should be pruned after flowers die off.