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Wednesday, April 11

a successful spring garden

Welcome to All in the Detail... I am so glad you are here! 


I’m the first to admit, I just don’t have a green thumb. I wish I did because I love gardens, the life it brings, the joyful color, the depth and texture it adds to a lawn (or any space, as a matter of fact)… but I just can’t make it happen. My backyard is considered a ‘courtyard’ because there is no grass or garden to be seen for miles.  It is all paver stones, fountains, a swimming pool, a fire pit, a grilling station and multi-level decking… a brown thumb homeowner’s dream.  But I do know that it is that time of year, gardening is the thing to be doing right now. So, I went to some gardening experts and asked for some advice to share in blogland and boy, did they come through for us.

Here are some key elements that ensure your plants stay healthy and productive during the spring

raised flower bed Plant in Raised Beds
Filled with rich, fast-draining planting mix, raised beds are an ideal growing environment for vegetables and flowers - important if your native soil is heavy clay (like Georgia). Use fieldstones, set loosely, to create an attractive edging; it can be easily dismantled at season's end and reused differently next time. This is the perfect method to add a garden to any space without disturbing the existing ground.
 
fence trellisl Build a Fence Trellis for your Climbing Flowers and Vegetables
To maximize a small space, train plants and vegetables on fence-mounted trellises. For each one, cut a 5- x 10-foot piece of rigid 1/4-inch wire mesh from a building supplier. Attach four wood blocks to the fence (one for each corner of mesh), screw a lag hook into each block, and fit the mesh over the hooks.
 
bird bath Supply a Birdbath
The perfect garden centerpiece is a circular structure (either a birdbath or flower filled urn).  The birdbath will attract birds that in turn feed on insect pests. The color of the bath’s facade could be the perfect compliment to the garden. I love any addition that brings more life to a garden, and watching the birds frolic in the water is a relaxing way to spend some leisure time. 
 
tomato cages Grow Tomatoes in Cages
An easy homemade cages has an organic look. HOW-TO: Set four 6-foot-long 2 x 2 redwood stakes 1 foot into the ground to form a 20- x 2-inch square; plant seedling in the center. As the plant grows, tie sisal twine around stakes every 6 inches. Who wouldn't like an endless supply of homegrown tomatoes right outside your back door?
 
sunflower Pick the Right Flowers
Cheerful blooms attract bees, butterflies, and other pollinators; they also bring birds and beneficial insects that dine on insect pests. Pictured is a 'Jerusalem Sunrise Lemon' (above), like other sunflowers, is easy to grow, a beautiful addition to any garden and attracts the bees and butterflies.
 
peppers Keep a Garden Calendar
Jot down when to fertilize (heavy feeders such as tomatoes can use diluted liquid fish emulsion several times during the growing season). Also write down when your crops should start producing (check labels). Pick peppers when they reach their mature size and color.

Now, doesn’t this make gardening seem easy?  “I CAN DO THIS”… well, I wish.

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