It's Gardening Season!
There are some general rules that apply to gardens in zones where the weather is warm no matter what the season. It is different here so take stock of your green space and go forth and grow something!
Plan, Plan, Plan. Make a long-range home landscape plan and stick to it. Instead of picking up whatever is on sale at the nursery, dragging it home and then trying to decide where it will fit, do some planning. Do the planting plan graphically, to scale if possible and make plant wish list to go with it.
Resolve to plant at least one tree and/or shrub in the plan that no one else in the neighborhood has planted. Diversity is the key to survival. Survival of the plants because with a variety of species planted, no single disease or insect can wipe out the entire neighborhood plantings. Survival of wildlife can also be dependant on a wide variety of food offerings. Planting a variety is simply good sense.
Water appropriately. Water is going to be gold in the future. Most of our landscapes can get by with less water than we are putting out regularly. That is not to say that you shouldn’t apply irrigation, just take the time to calibrate your irrigation system, install low volume systems where possible and use it only when the plants in the landscape really need it.
Mulch Everything. I would mulch my grass if I could. Organic mulches even out the soil temperatures - cool in the summer, warm in the winter. They suppress weeds and conserve moisture. Replenish your mulch twice a year to a depth of at least 4 to 6 inches. Keep the mulch away from the trunks of trees and shrubs and the base of the house to prevent moisture and insect problems.
Enjoy your garden. Make a space to live, entertain, and play outside. Add a bench, table and/or chairs. Wind chimes and art make the space inviting. Plant to invite the birds, bees, and other critters to join you. Well manicured landscapes are fading fast in popularity, limit higher maintenance areas. More carefree plantings are being planted with low maintenance plants that take care of themselves and give you time to join your company.
Let it be. When stuff happens, and it will, evaluate the results before getting mad, sad or stubborn, there are no coincidences. Take time to step back, smile, and laugh.
Now! Get up, get out and do some gardening. It’s good for the soul. The lessons we learn in our gardens are good for the rest of our lives. When up against an obstacle, don’t give up. Find the solution, but you don’t have to do it alone. Call friends, ask for advice and help; do the research, make a decision and make it happen.
KC cat loved rosemary, thyme, catnip, and the garden.