1. Size is everything. Mature plant size is the number one item people
tend to ignore when selecting plants. Plants need a few years to reach
their mature size. Often people don’t want to wait several years for a
landscape to fill in, so they will space plants too close to each
other, or to the house, the sidewalk or street. Space plants according
to their mature size, not the size they are at the time of purchase,
and be patient.
2. Believe the plant tags. Plant tags are not just for marketing and
attracting attention. They provide valuable information from the grower
that needs to be noted by the buyer. These plant tags usually note plant
characteristics such as mature size and spacing, as well as site
requirements such as soil type, light and moisture.
3. Know your soil. Think of soil as the foundation of your landscape
and get to know it by taking soil samples. The University of Minnesota
will test your soil for a small fee and report what your soil contains
and is lacking. Select plants based on your soil type.
4. Watch the sun. Consider how the sun moves across your landscape. A
plant requiring “full sun” typically needs six or more hours of full
sun per day. “Part sun” means about 3 to 6 hours a day, “full shade”
means the plant receives no direct sun throughout the day. You may want
to sketch your landscape and note the hours of sunlight that various
5. Locate plants according to water needs. Xeriscaping refers to
designing areas of landscape that don’t require supplemental irrigation
and uses techniques such as hydrozoning (grouping plants in a landscape
according to moisture requirements), minimizing turf areas, efficient
application of water and plant selection. Although we live in the land
of 10,000 lakes, gardeners and landscape designers need to be diligent
about conserving water. Thinking about using less water in your
landscape will lead to better plant choices.
Thanks for reading
Have a great day
Some of you have made it quite clear that you would move on. I think
this is probably the answer. I will finish this year (can't be long
now!) and decline to attend in the Spring.
> garden soil. It may contain microbes or insect larvae that will hatch
> once it warms up inside a cozy home. Instead, opt for bags of potting
> soil purchased at the garden center. This soil is sterilized so that it
> contains pure soil and other ingredients, but no harmful insects or
> microbes. Most commercial potting mixes include a porous material such
> as vermiculite, the tiny white pebble-looking things in the mix. These
> allow water to drain freely. Many also contain fertilizers to boost
> plant health.
If your going for richer soil I recommend looking at
www.takesumi.co.uk. I found it really useful restoring depleted soil
that was under a shed we have removed.
As for your decision it really depends on the depth of your pockets. If
you can afford premium topsoil that's probably going to be better but
bulk bought soil will, of course, be just fine. Then you'll have more
to spend on whatever you plant! It's also important to remember that
microbes are an important part of soil too, so I don't necessarily buy
into the sterile idea.
> If your going for richer soil I recommend looking at www.takesumi.co.uk.
> I found it really useful restoring depleted soil that was under a shed
> we have removed.
> you can afford premium topsoil that's probably going to be better but
> bulk bought soil will, of course, be just fine. Then you'll have more
> to spend on whatever you plant! It's also important to remember that
> microbes are an important part of soil too, so I don't necessarily buy
> into the sterile idea.
My advice, mix any "topsoil", the cheap version will do just fine, with
good quality organic compost. About 5 to 1 is a good mix, thats 5
topsoil to 1 compost.
Don't worry about shrinkage, it will happen no matter what you do, so
you will need to top up every year or two.
Most, not all, gardening plants and shrubs prefer a friable soil with
plenty of food. Mixing organic compost with the topsoil will achieve
Raised beds are a great way of growng gardening plants and shrubs.
And its the best way to grow vegetables, if ever you want to.
I've used this method for years on a heavy clay soil and the results
have been 1st class.
Good luck and all the best
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