I have been away from the computer quite a bit these last few weeks as spring has finally sprung here in Edmonton and I’ve been able to get outside and spend some quality time in my garden. I consider myself very much a beginner gardener, as I only started attempting to do serious gardening last year. Before, we used to get a contractor in, but we’d moved house since and unfortunately, we’re no longer in Lawncare.net service areas. My daughter was finally old enough to “help”, and I didn’t have to chase her all over the yard to keep her from hurting herself. This spring is a series of firsts for me: first time I started seeds indoors, first time I am making use of the entire raised bed I put in last year, and first time I am planting seeds outdoors (I was too scared to last year, and just got plants).
So! When you’re a beginner gardener, where do you start? There is so much information out there and so many possibilities for what you can plant! I still have a problem with getting too excited at greenhouses and garden centres and just putting plants on my cart without really thinking about whether I can sustain them. I thought I would compile some of the posts out there that I have found most useful as a beginner gardener in Edmonton (because of course our growing season is much shorter up North!). Here are some of my favourite resources on gardening for beginners:
Vegetable Gardening: Great starter guide with links for each vegetable to get a good description on how to grow them.
How To Grow Organic Strawberries:Very thorough article on all of the ins and outs of planting strawberries. I have been adding more and more strawberries to our garden because my daughter LOVES them, and they taste amazing straight from the garden!
Follow This One Tip In Your Garden & Get A Ton Of Organic Strawberries!: Last year I did not know that the term “runner” meant. Now I do!
Ten Mistakes New Herb Gardeners Make (and How to Avoid Them!): Great little tutorial for beginners planting herbs!
Pruning tomato plants: how and when to do it: Great tips for caring for tomato plants – which are pretty easy to grow in my opinion!
Toilet Paper Roll Seed Starters: I tried doing this however it got all moldy for me. I believe this is because I was a little over-eager with watering. I have heard that this can work really well (if you hold back with the watering and don’t get mold) because then you can just pop your rolls into the soil and not have to worry about trying to get your seedling out of a plastic container (which I also did and lost some of them in the process. What can I say? I’m a total newbie at this!).
How to Plant Garlic: It may not be the right time to plant garlic – but I’m really excited because I followed the instructions in this post last fall and have very healthy garlic plants that sprouted without me doing anything else! So pin this one for the fall! Note: I used some organic garlic cloves from my Organic Box – I’ve heard other people say to ensure that you use organic garlic when you do this, not cheaper garlic, otherwise you may not get good results.
DIY Raised Garden Bed: Easy to follow instructions – I did something very similar to this last year!
Mosquito Planter: I am a mosquito magnet. My mother always said I must have “sweet blood” because I get ravaged by mosquitoes. So I attempted to help control the situation with some of these plants placed in pots all around my yard last year! Going to do it again this year!
12 Spring Gardening Maintenance Tips You Must Do Now: I follow Anna Hackman’s GreenTalk blog and really love it. She gives very sage advice for us beginner gardeners!
Coffee Grounds in the Garden: Friend or Foe?: If you have a coffee drinker in the house – this one is a great read for how to use coffee grounds in the garden! I put a ton of them on my hydrangeas last year and got beautiful luscious blooms! Here’s another resource for ways to use coffee grounds in your garden.
16 Foods That’ll Re-Grow from Kitchen Scraps:I tried the celery last year and indeed got a little celery plant out of it! I did it late in the season so this year I’m going to try it ASAP. Fun to do with the kids!