Get Your Garden Off to a Great Start

  • Difficulty Rating: Beginner
Get Your Garden Off to Great Start

You’ve waited months for the spring to return. Finally, you can start gardening outdoors again. And if you’re like me, you’re definitely ready to get going.

That’s why I’ve put together this list of Fiskars articles that will get your spring gardening off to a great start. Here are six steps for getting your garden off to a great start this growing season.

Setting Gardening Goals
Remember around the New Year when you were busy establishing resolutions for your health, your work and maybe even your garden? If so, now is a great time to pull out that list and put it into action.

Don’t have a list of garden resolutions yet? No worries. These New Year’s Resolutions for Gardeners will get you motivated to grow a healthy, sustainable garden this year.

Planning Gardens
Late-winter and early-spring can be an excellent time to let the brain wander, as you plan your garden. Even a stormy spring day can be a chance to daydream about changes you’d like to make to your outdoor spaces this growing season.

Here are several different ways to find inspiration and become friends with your “inner garden designer.”

Daydreaming about your garden with seed catalogs

Daydream
It’s great to daydream, but eventually you’re going to need to put those plans into words.

That’s why this glossary of basic gardening terms from fellow Fiskars writer Dee Nash might come in handy, so you can speak the right language with outside experts on your garden plans.

Keeping Garden Journals
Keep track of your garden progress and plantings as you move forward this growing season. As Fiskars writer Marty Ross explains, “A long relationship with a garden journal allows you to look back, and also to plan for the future.”

Garden Journals certainly aren’t new, of course.

Thomas Jefferson kept very detailed records of planting lists and times, as well as different weather conditions. This Founding Father was a knowledgeable plantsman, who really understood the value of keeping a garden journal. He may just convince you too...

Getting in Shape
Gardening isn’t just fun, it’s hard work too. Taking the time now to prepare for the vigorous gardening months ahead will prevent unnecessary aches and pains.

Learn more about the different muscles used during gardening, and read some of my favorite resources for  getting in shape for these outdoor activities.

Before you garden, take the time to stretch several minutes ahead of time. Here are several good stretching exercises from fellow Fiskars writer Robin Haglund.

Prepping soil

Prepping Soil
Want a successful garden project? Pay attention to your soil. It’s one of the most important things you can do to ensure your garden is healthy and productive.

As Robin Haglund writes, “It is from the soil that plants draw much of the water and nutrients they need to stay healthy and complete the process of creating their own food.”

To learn more about your soil’s nutrients and pH level, it’s worth investing in a soil test. Here’s why you should test your soil.

Experienced gardeners know that healthy soil needs plenty of organic matter to provide the right conditions for growth. Fiskars writer Joe Lamp’l explains why, and gives you the dirt about organic matter.

When it comes time to apply fertilizers, you’ll want the one that has the nutrients your plants really need. All fertilizers aren’t the same. Here’s a quick crash course in reading a fertilizer label.

Choosing the right seeds

Starting from Seeds
You can start your garden from transplants found at your local independent garden center. But spring is such a great seed-starting time, I always reserve a space each year for growing plants from seeds.

To increase your chances for success, here are six questions to ask yourself before buying seeds.

Some plants like tomatoes, peppers and eggplants are typically started by seeds indoors, after six weeks or more before the last frost date.  But many vegetables can be grown quickly from seeds sown directly outdoors, such as lettuces, radishes and arugula. These plants grow easily from seeds sown outdoors.

Get your seedlings off to a healthy start with these quick tips. Before you know it, you’ll be enjoying the garden harvests and relieved you started these seedlings right around now. Good luck and have fun!