Beginner's Guide to Gardening

Views: 15900 | Last Update: 2009-02-04
Beginner's Guide to Gardening - Provided by eHow
When gardening, remember that wintertime is a great time to plan a garden. Discover how to draw a diagram before starting a garden with help from a sustainable gardener in this free video on gardening tips. View Video Transcript

About this Author

Yolanda Vanveen

Video Transcript

Hi, this is Yolanda Vanveen, and in this segment, we're going to go over the beginner's guide to gardening. Now, gardening is such an enjoyable hobby, and it can be your career as well. But when you're gardening, there's a few rules you should follow or a few things that you should think about before you even start a flowerbed. Now, wintertime is a great time to plan your garden. Usually, there's not a lot growing and you can start deciding what type of plants you want to put in your garden and how you want to design it. So before you start a garden, it's always easy to make a diagram. So take a piece of paper and write it out -- maybe even measure if off, just so that you know how much space you have. And then you have to decide what would you like in your garden? There's so many different types of gardens that you can select from, and first of all, I like to just sit and dream about what's the most beautiful garden that you've ever seen. Or if you could make a dream garden, what would be in it? Would you want a tropical theme to remind you of a trip to Fiji, or would you like a traditional English garden for your trip to London? Whether you want a traditional garden or you want a tropical garden, it doesn't matter. It's your garden, so you make the decisions. When you set aside an area for a garden, make sure that it's either sunny or shady or a mixture of both. And then when you select your plants, make sure that they're either sun or part-shade or shade plants. And do your research. And if you live in a tropical area like San Diego, then plants from tropical areas will do really well in your climate. If you live in a mild climate, like Portland, Oregon, then plants from South Africa or plants from Chile or South America or plants from the Northwest would grow really well there. So when I select my plants, I try to look for plants that are native to the areas where I live. And then, I mix and match. And with a flowerbed, you want to go with a 80/20 ratio. So you want one big focal point on one side of your bed, and then the rest blends in. So you don't want your focal point in the middle. And you can have...what I'm doing is lots of canna lilies. I'm going to have big canna lilies here with some smaller bulbs and plants in the front. But whatever you do, just do what you love. And remember, there's different types of plants. You can get perennials. Those are plants that come back every year after year after year. You don't lose them. Annuals are plants that come up in bloom and then they die back and they don't come back 'til the next year. A lot of times, they will re-seed themselves, but the plant itself dies. A bi-annual is a plant that comes up the first year but doesn't give you a bloom 'til the second year, and then they set seeds and then they only bloom every two years. And a lot of different bulbs do that anyway. Sometimes plants take a couple years to do really well. So whatever your dream garden is, just start collecting plants, whether it's annuals, perennials, or bi-annuals or shrubs, and just mix and match them and you'll have a gorgeous garden the next summer.