Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Great Gardening Tips for Beginners this Summer

PEKIN, Ill.,–– Gardening is one of the most satisfying hobbies you can undertake this summer, but it can also be one of the most challenging. Providing the right amount of sunlight, fertilizer, and water to all of your plants can be difficult to keep track of. However, watching your flowers bloom and your vegetables sprout and grow is worth the wait and the effort! Earn your green thumb this season with these great gardening tips for beginners this summer!

Great Gardening Tips for Beginners this Summer

Get Your Soil Tested

Your garden's soil provides nutrients to your plants, keeping them healthy and growing. Keeping track of your soil's pH levels and texture will determine whether or not plants can grow in your garden. Since certain plants thrive in specific pH levels, it's best to get your soil tested so you know what plants can and can't grow. For example, the ground near or underneath pine trees will likely have very acidic soil due to the falling needles, and be much tougher for plants to grow in. You can either send your soil in to a nearby nursery, or get your own testing kit from Home Depot or Lowe's. If you'd like to try a homemade testing kit, put soil in two cups of water. Then, put baking soda in one cup, and vinegar in another. If the vinegar cup fizzes, you have alkali soil, and if the baking soda cup fizzes, you have acidic soil.

Repurpose Coffee Grounds & Eggshells

These homemade remedies are perfect if you need to keep pesky insects away from your plants! Sprinkling used coffee grounds in your soil will keep ants, snails, and slugs away from your budding plants. If you coarsely crush your egg shells and sprinkle them around your plants, you can create a barricade to protect them from slugs, snails, and other soft-bodied pests. The smell of eggshells and coffee grounds are deterrents for deer and other hungry mammals, too! Coffee grounds and eggshells also make excellent compost, providing more nutrients to your growing plants.

Great Gardening Tips for Beginners this Summer

Keep Your Plant Tags

If you aren't sure about how much or how little to water your plant or what environment is most healthy for it, keeping the plant tags will help! Your plant tags detail how much water it needs, the sunlight it requires, and the environment it grows best in. You can even create a scrapbook to keep track of the plants you're growing, their requirements, and, if you're feeling creative, a few sketches of what the plant looks like. It's a great way to keep track of your plants' needs!

Keep an Easy-to-Read Rain Gauge

Rain gauges are extremely useful on both hot and rainy summer days. You can monitor the amount of water that gets to your plants to determine whether they're getting not enough or too much. Rain gauges, while very helpful, can be occasionally difficult to read, especially on rainy and humid days. Put a few droplets of food coloring in the gauge to make the water level extremely legible, helping you keep track of the output of your sprinkler or rainwater. Just make sure you install it away from the trees to prevent water runoff!

Great Gardening Tips for Beginners this Summer

Start with Easy Plants

The best way to hone your skills as a gardener is to get started with some easy-to-maintain plants! These little guys require little to no maintenance and provide the perfect starting point as you dive headfirst into gardening. Plants like lavender, snapdragons, and pansies are very low maintenance and can live a very long time if properly cared for. Once you've built up your confidence with these plants, you can expand your garden with some easy-to-grow vegetables like lettuce, tomatoes, and basil. Before you know it, you'll have a fully furnished garden with the best homegrown veggies of the Midwest!

Gardening can be tedious, but remaining diligent and attentive to your plants will give you a beautiful landscape and fresh fruits and vegetables for your home. Give your home's exterior a personal touch with these great gardening tips for beginners this summer. For some additional inspiration, hobbies, and crafting ideas this summer, follow our DIY + Crafts page on Pinterest! Also, keep an eye out for our regularly updated coupons and follow our summer car care tips to keep your vehicle in good working order this season. But if you're in the market for a new vehicle, take a look at our Ford crossover comparison to find the perfect crossover for your lifestyle!

At Velde Ford, we're committed to providing our customers with an unbeatable level of service and a great car buying experience. Stop by the dealership located at 2200 North 8th Street, Pekin, IL 61554 or visit our website: VeldeFordPekin.com for more information.

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