“A love of gardening is a seed once sown that never dies.” – Gertrude Jekyll, Horticulturist

Warmer weather means spending more time outside, stocking up on vitamin D, and most importantly – working on your beautiful garden. Whether you’re a bright-eyed novice gardener or a seasoned expert, everyone could use a little help to make their garden the best it can be. So, with the help of McDonald Garden Center, Countryside Gardens and Eggleston Garden Center, we’ve collected ten gardening tips and tricks for you to keep in mind when you’re deep in the weeds – literally.

1. Before you plant, try to calculate just how much sunlight your blooms need. Most plants only need six hours of sunlight to thrive. Be sure to check the plant’s tags for an exact amount.

2. To improve your soil, try working in a few inches of compost. Manure and peat moss are acceptable alternatives.

3. Use a fertilizer with a high level of phosphorus to keep your gardens and containers blooming.

4. If you opt-out of gardening gloves, run your fingernails across a bar of soap. This will keep dirt from accumulating under your nails.

5. Plants absorb water through their roots, so make sure you’re watering at the base of the plant where the soil is. If you water the tops of plant leaves, you can cause fungus and disease.

6. If you’re spreading ashes from a wood-burning fireplace or stove in your garden, make sure you’re aware that over time you’re raising the pH of your soil which will affect your plants’ growth.

7. To prevent contracting soil diseases, tomatoes should be rotated to different locations in the soil every year or two. This tip is also applicable to potatoes and eggplants.

8. Purchase Honeybee Attractant to place in gardens and orchards for increased pollination and crop yields.

9. The best way to water your plant is to water deeply and less often. This helps develop a deeper root system. Overwatering can rot the plant to the point where it can’t be saved. Make sure you read up on the specific care for each plant so you can correctly water it.

10. Pruning at the wrong time will cause your plants not to bloom the following year, so always make sure to research the right time to prune.

Thank you to McDonald Garden Center, Countryside Gardens and Eggleston Garden Center for the helpful tips. Happy gardening!