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Bread feeds the body indeed, but the flowers also feed the soul.

~The Koran~

Spring Plant Buying

This has been the longest winter here in Tennessee that I can remember. Short days mixed with clouds made me really appreciate the occasional, albeit very cold, sunny day. Baby plant shipments are arriving and surely, spring will be around in just a few more weeks.
Whether it's a sunny weekend or the arrival of yet another mail order plant catalog, a pilgrimage to a plant web site or local garden center is not far away. Here's some thoughts on how to enjoy your shopping experience and have a successful gardening season in 2010.

Plant Selection

No matter how carefully i research, there's always some new and interesting plant smiling at me in the nursery, the trial garden, a magazine page or web site. Irresistible and destined to make a stop in my garden on its way to plant heaven.

  • Check the culture requirements
  • Look for firm and dense roots and bushy growth
  • Research before buying
  • Instant garden kits can make seed planting easier

Ground Preparation

Tilling and digging is out, layering is in! Prepare the planting hole and disturb as little of the neighboring area as possible. This may seem like odd advise but the less area is disturbed and the sooner the roots or your new acquisition learn to 'fit in', the higher the chances are for success. Water deep once or twice the first week and mulch heavily. As difficult as this may seem - resist the urge to mother your new plants. I have sent more plants to the other side with attention than from neglect.
Your agricultural extension service is still the best place to get a soil test done but results will take a little while. For a quick, on the spot, look-see, check out do it yourself instant test kits and reusable testers.


Your hands and nails will thank you if you wear a good pair of garden gloves. No matter what the package promises, the middle finger of your dominant hand will wear out the tip, it's just a matter of time. My suggestion: If you like them and they fit buy two or three pair.

Let's make 2010 the start of a great gardening decade - share the fun of gardening by taking a friend along when shopping.


March in the Garden:

Upside-Down Feeder:
Easy Edibles - Seed Disks:
Seeded Gift Wrap :