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How to Put in Flower Beds

By Karen Ellis ; Updated September 21, 2017
Blooming flower bed
purple flower bed image by Steve Mann from Fotolia.com

Flower beds are created every year with annuals or a mixture of annual and perennial flower choices. No matter what type of flower bed you are putting in, the first thing to consider is the type of plants you will include. Most annuals require a full-sun location, while there are perennials that do well, or even prefer, partial shade. Be sure to choose the right plants at the nursery that will flourish with the natural amount of sun your flower beds receive.

Amend your soil. Compost will change sandy soil to hold more water and clay soil to drain more water. It also adds nutrients to the soil needed by new flower plants. Start by digging up the area, a foot down, where the flower bed will reside. Loosen and break up the dirt, removing any roots, weeds, rocks or other debris.

Pour about a 2-inch layer of organic compost onto the top of the flower bed and work it in to the ground soil. Rake the soil even.

Draw a flower map. You have decided on the plants you want in your flower bed by the amount of sun available. Draw the shape of the bed on a piece of paper, placing the plant names on the map where they will go. Make sure taller flowers will be in the back of the bed and that they won’t overshadow smaller flowers, at least for too much of the day. Plant the smallest flowers at the front of the flower bed. Plan a formal design with a color scheme of flowers in rows or an informal one where flowers are planted to appear more natural

Place your plants, where they will be planted, on the amended soil bed. This gives you a chance to arrange and rearrange the plants before you start putting them in.

Dig holes and plant the flowers one at a time. Remove the plant from the nursery container. Dig a whole the same height and just slightly larger than the root ball. Place the plant into the hole and push soil around the roots. Press gently on the top of the soil to remove any air pockets. Repeat this process for each plant.

Water the entire flower bed, but not so much that you create mud.


Things You Will Need

  • Shovel
  • Compost
  • Rake
  • Pencil
  • Paper
  • Flower plants

About the Author


Karen Ellis has been a full-time writer since 2006. She is an expert crafter, with more than 30 years of experience in knitting, chrocheting, quilting, sewing, scrapbooking and other arts. She is an expert gardener, with lifelong experience. Ellis has taken many classes in these subjects and taught classes, as well.