10 gardening tips for beginners in India
- Make a small start
- Choose your plant mate carefully
- Place it well
- Soil is the soulmate
- Tools- the right trick
- Let the sunshine
- Water is life
- The goodness of natural fertilizers
- Magic in mulch
- Read the signs
Plants are the best way to elevate the vibes of any space. Gardening and plant-based activities can help cheer up your mood and bring joy & peace to the surroundings and lives of people around. If you are planning to become a plant parent & not sure where to start, follow these easy gardening tips to start your journey as a happy plant parent.
1. Make a small start
If you’re a first-time gardener, then start small. Begin with a single plant or a small space to give you enough time and dedication towards your plants. This will help you focus on the needs and growth of your plant.
2. Choose your plant mate carefully
No matter how positive your vibes are, some plants are doomed at your doorstep, not because you lack green instinct, but because they’re a bad fit. Buy a plant that suits your lifestyle. Before bringing your new friend home, you might need to research well. Not all plants can be grown everywhere, so select a type considering the weather, geographical features of your area.
Create a picture of your perfect plant or garden in mind, whether you need a succulent, herbs, creepers, vegetables, bonsai, or any ornamental plants. Do some research around and ask your local Gardner to make sure you pick the right plant. All you need to do is find the right plant.
If you’re terrible at remembering to water your plant, cacti and snake plants will cherish your neglect. If you have a fair idea of taking care of your plants, go for plants like the dwarf jades.
3. Place it well
You surely want to witness the growth of your plant, so find a spot where you can daily see your plant, as rightly said - out of sight & out of mind.
It is important to choose a suitable spot for your plants. If your space never sees the sun, shade lovers like ferns, Dracaena, spider plants, or peace lily are the best fit. Make sure you understand your plant and know how much light it needs per day.
These conditions may also vary with plants. Some can grow well in shades; some may need less light to grow. Keep your plants in a right-sized pot or planter. Just make sure it has a drainage hole to avoid waterlogging that can rot the roots.
4. Soil is the soulmate
The soil will fulfill your plant’s needs, be it nutrients, oxygen & water. The correct mixture and nutrients of soil can change your plant’s life. Make sure your garden has healthy soil to support your plant’s growth. What is the perfect mix? That depends. Every plant grower and gardener has their own secret recipe. The classic soil mixture is one part garden loam or topsoil, one part peat moss or mature compost, and one part sand or perlite. The sand helps improve drainage. You can also add a balanced, slow-release organic fertilizer to the mix. You can alter this ratio according to your plant’s need.
Don’t forget to remove all the lumps and granules from the mixture. Organic mixtures like vegetable peels, tea compost, and eggshells are also claimed to make the soil more fertile.
5. Tools- the right trick
You will need some basic gardening tools to craft your plant’s journey. As a new plant parent, you may need some of the planting tools to start with.
- Pruning scissors to shape the plant, chop off any dead parts, and cutting out the weeds near the plant.
- Spade for digging and preparing the soil for growing your plants.
- Watering tools- you can choose a hose or a watering can for your plants. As small plants need to be watered delicately around the roots, watering cans are a more suitable choice for them.
- Your plant may get surrounded by unwanted plants- I usually keep them as in as I love all types of plants. But often, these weeds utilize the nutrients from the soil and can impact your plant’s growth. You can either replenish the nutrient of the soil regularly or use a forked trowel to remove them.
6. Let the sunshine
I often say this and will repeat it again. There is no such thing as INDOOR PLANTS. All plants need sunlight. The duration of sunlight it needs separates a so-called “outdoor” plant from an “indoor” one.
So, now that we know that sunlight IS important for all plants and is the main energy source, the next question is how much sunlight your plant needs?
Well, there is no one answer to that. Your plants might need at least 6 hours of direct sun daily. However, this may vary from plant to plant. Shade plants may thrive from 3 to 6 hours of daily sunlight but need protection from the intense mid-day sun. In contrast, full shade plants can even grow well in sunlight less than 3 hours.
However, persistent lack of proper sunlight may damage your plants, and they may eventually die!
7. Water is life
Watering your plants will help them nurture well. It is essential for the germination of seeds, growth of plant roots, and nutrition and multiplication of soil organisms.
Water your plants slowly and let the soil soak in the water. Keep the soil well-drained to maintain the moisture in the soil. Plants require more water during summers than in winter. Make sure you do not overwater, as it may damage your plant.
Young plants need watering every day, whereas adult plants can be watered twice or thrice a week.
The general rule of thumb ensures that the top few layers of the soil are dry before watering the plant again.
8. The goodness of natural fertilizers
Give your plants some extra nutrients with the goodness of natural fertilizers. Make compost at home for your plant buddy by adding manure, vegetable peels, tea bags, eggshells, plant trims to the soil.
Composting will enhance soil fertility, retain moisture and nutrients, support good bacteria growth, and help keep harmful insects away and keep your plant healthy.
9. Magic in mulch
Mulching is the practice of covering the topmost layer of soil with organic material to maintain good soil health. Mulching helps retain the soil moisture & prevents drying of soil, protection against weeds, protects seeds in initial stages, enhances nutrients in the soil. With time, mulch decomposes into the soil itself, making the soil more fertile.
10. Read the signs
You can check your plant’s health through its appearance; plants reflect the deficiencies and damages that can help you act in an early stage to save your green buddy.
The leaves and roots are important indicators to determine your plant's health. The most common warning signs of poor plant health are wilting, change in color, leaves shedding, brown or yellow patches on leaves, and dry leaves. Keep rotating the soil for proper aeration and nutrient supply to the plants.
These signs may arise from too much or too little exposure to sunlight, improper watering, poor soil health, or deficiency of nutrients in the soil.
Hope these gardening tips for beginners can help you become a successful plant parent in just no time. Give your plant the care, attention, and love they deserve, and they will bloom happily, turning your surroundings into a unique Planting Story!