Garden Design – Guide for New Gardeners

Garden Design – The Importance of Careful Planning

Garden design, along with any other professional undertaking, requires careful planning in order to succeed. As fun as gardening is, simply plunging headfirst into a task without being adequately prepared can result in unforeseen disaster or complications. As such, it’s important to have an established plan in place before you begin.

By integrating planning into garden design you can be prepared for as many unexpected occurrences as possible. Having back-up plans can allow you to overcome setbacks almost effortlessly without losing a great deal of time and resources in the process. It can also help prevent disenchantment or loss of interest in case something goes wrong.

Garden Design – The Basics

Planning a new garden is fun and exciting, and offers a great outlet for your own personal creativity. It can be a perfect activity to enjoy with the entire family, and acts as a useful bonding tactic in that it brings people closer together.

The first things to do before you begin working on your garden design are to consider the following important items:

· Budget – This is the most important aspect of your garden design plan. Your budget dictates how large and elaborate your project can end up being. It’s important to stick with this budget, as going over can leave a project half-finished (and a hole in your pocket)! Keep the final budget figure in mind at all times, and be sure to make updates to it as you purchase tools, supplies and the plants themselves.

· Space – How much space do you have available in your yard? This can influence what you plant in a very significant way. Trees, for example, require extensive space both above and below ground to thrive. If you plant large species close to your house, the roots can cause foundation cracking and leaks over time. Things like this are very important in the overall garden design scheme.

Garden Design – Your Plans

Next is to consider what kind of look you’re going for. Do you want a series of attractive and delicate flower beds? Would you prefer a mixture of flowers and shrubberies, perhaps with a tree or two? You may also be interested in a water garden including ponds and fountains. Even vegetable gardens are popular choices. Ultimately, it’s up to you to figure out exactly what you want.

Before you buy any plants, the first step is to measure up your yard. Find out how many feet you have to work with in each direction and then consider what to buy accordingly to that information. Use a tape measure to plan out individual beds. You can use chalk, an edging tool, small stakes or even a length of twine to outline the shape of each one.

A good idea is to draw everything out on graph paper at this point. By having a paper copy handy, you can take it with you to garden centers to show to staff if you are in need of further garden design advice. You can also make changes easily should you come up with new ideas partway through the process.

Garden Design – The Tools

You’re going to need a set of specific tools to begin. The following are all must-haves for any serious gardener:

· One or two large sturdy long-handled spades
· Dirt rake
· Garden hoe
· Large watering can
· Wheelbarrow
· Small hand shovels
· Edging tool
· Hose with garden sprinkler attachment

With these tools you’ll be all set to begin digging up the various flower beds you have planned around your yard. Once you have finished digging each area up, you should also acquire the following:

· Nutrient-rich topsoil mixture
· Manure (Cow, pig, sheep)

You may also wish to consider the following depending on the overall scheme of your garden design:

· Peat moss
· Mulch
· Shavings (cedar are popular)

Research a good soil mixture for the plants you wish to grow and prepare the beds for planting as soon as possible. At this point you’ll need to head out and buy the plants and flowers you wish to include in your garden design. You may wish to consult with your garden center staff for advice and information, including planting tips and important instructions involving garden maintenance.

Garden Design – Conclusion

Keeping all of these considerations in mind will make the entire garden design process easy and enjoyable. By planning out location, space and the actual species that will be living in your yard, you can take advantage of the fundamental advantages of garden design.

Being fully prepared allows you to react to unforeseen situations while seamlessly and smoothly enjoying the entire process from initial garden design state to the planting of the last flower.

Copyright (c) 2008 Brant Florist

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