Starting a new garden can be exciting but also a little confusing, especially if you are a beginner. I love to garden and have learned some shopping tips that everyone should know to help them grow and maintain beautiful garden throughout the seasons.
Stepping into a garden nursery or home and garden store can be a bit overwhelming. There are so many things to choose from and you need to know the right plants and equipment to get for your flower or vegetable garden.
The sales associates can be very helpful so don’t hesitate to ask any questions that you may have. I do like to go prepared though to make it easier on myself and to save time.
Before you Go to the Nursery
It is crucial to do some research before you even start your garden shopping. No one wants to spend all day at the nursery so make sure you do a few things before you head out.
The first thing you want to do is to take note of the area where you plan on planting your new garden. How much sun does the area get and how many hours of sun does it get?
Also, when starting a new garden, make sure to measure the area, garden bed, or pots that you will be using so you know how much soil, seeds, and plants to purchase. I hate having to go back to the store because I didn’t purchase enough!
Take a picture of the area so that if you have any questions about what will work best, you can show it to the staff so they can get a better idea of what you are working with.
Make sure you know what type of soil you have in your yard so you will know what plants will thrive. If you don’t know what type you have, bring a sample of it to the store and they may be able to identify it.
Also bring any pictures from magazines or the internet that you want to try and create. When you shop with a color palette in mind or some landscaping ideas, you can really create a stunning look to your garden.
The Best Time to Go
The best time to go shopping will depend on several things: do you want the most variety or the best deal?
If you want the most variety of plants, the best time to go is at the start of the season. Stores will have the most inventory and continue to get in fresh shipments.
Try to go early in the morning because it will be less crowded and the staff will be able to spend more time with you if you need assistance.
For the best deals on plants and soil, shop after Memorial Day. Most of the annuals will have bargain prices. If you are wanting to save on trees and shrubs, wait until midsummer for those deals.
The lowest prices will be found in the fall but the inventory will be dwindling. This is a great time to stock up on equipment like pots, shovels, gloves, etc. that can be used next year.
How to Pick the Best Plants
Before you even started shopping for your new garden, you took note of the sun, water, and size of the area where you will be planting. Make sure you read the instructions on the tags of any plants that you are interested in to make sure they can thrive in that environment.
Don’t buy any trees or shrubs that already have blooms on them. If they are flowering, then they are devoting all of their energy into reproducing and won’t be focused on root development which is needed for transplanting.
You do want to see annuals with a few open buds so you can see the variety and color.
Look for a lot of stable and abundant shoots and stems as well as green robust leaves to make sure the plant is healthy. Stay away from any browning, wilting foliage because this could be a sign of infestation or disease.
Don’t be afraid to take the plant out of the pot to get a good look at the roots. There should be a lot of soil and hardy roots.
You don’t want it to feel too light because they will have more roots than dirt and all of the roots have taken the shape of the container, these are weak plants that may not survive for very long.
By using these shopping tips, starting a new garden should be fun and easy. You should have a beautiful, thriving new garden without all of the headache. There is nothing worse than putting all of that time and effort into your garden and have it wither away.
What garden shopping strategies do you like to use when you start a new garden?