July 7th, 2021 by
A blooming garden bursting with thriving plants is neither cheap nor easy to achieve. If you have spent money on nice plants only to find they fail to grow as they should or, even worse, die off it can be incredibly frustrating. While there can be a number of things that can hamper your plants’ growth, including pest and disease, here are the basic things that will prevent your plants from thriving so rule these out first before looking into more specific species afflictions.
Many plants require around 8 hours of direct sunlight to really thrive. The sun is an essential energy source for photosynthesis. If your plants are not growing well, they may just not be getting enough sunlight. However, many plants prefer indirect sunlight and shady spots
Either try moving your plants into sunnier spots or switch to shade-loving plants, like foxgloves, bleeding hearts, or geraniums, that are better equipped to cope with it.
We all know that water is essential for plant growth so if there has been a period of scant rainfall you may well have been doing your best for your garden and watering the plants every night. However, did you realise that you can actually water plants too much?
Over-watering can actually be just as detrimental to plant health as drought. That’s because it can cause plants to rot, especially if they sit in water for any length of time. This can particularly happen in pots and containers that don’t have sufficient drainage.
Just check the soil before watering. It should be slightly dry, which shows it has absorbed all the moisture it needs. If there is still moisture there, leave the watering until another day.
Top tip: improve drainage in containers by drilling holes in the bottom. Including rocks, stones, and sand in the soil will also help.
Plants need space to be able to grow – not just in visible areas but under the soil as well, where roots can be as big as the plant itself. Overcrowding your pots and borders can lead to roots becoming entangled and choked and plants won’t have room to spread.
When planting, give plants enough space and if you have already overcrowded an area, consider relocating some elsewhere.
Soil is another building block for good plant health. While there is nothing wrong with planting straight into the ground in your garden, it may not be rich enough in nutrients to sustain your plants. Boost it by adding in fertiliser or mixing with some shop-bought potting compost. There are a number of household waste items that can actually help enrich your soil, including grass clippings, coffee grounds, vegetable scraps, and eggshells so this is a great way of repurposing waste that would otherwise go in the bin.
A gardener’s nemesis! Just as overcrowding can stifle plant growth, weeds will do the same. Being invasive, they will take the nutrients from the soil and overwhelm more delicate plant life.
Keep a close eye on them and pull them out as soon as you spot them coming through. The longer you leave them, the more stubborn they will be and the further they will spread (they also are much tougher and better equipped to survive without as much sun or water).
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