What is not to love about gardening? Whether you have decided to plant your first big vegetable garden or simply want to grow flowers in pots on your patio, you are considered a gardener. Visiting your local garden center for the first time can feel a little intimidating but following a few tips will help you avoid common mistakes.
Avoid shopping on the weekend
Walk into any garden center on a Saturday or Sunday and you are likely to be surprised by how busy they are, especially in early spring when everyone is excited about getting back into gardening. A packed garden center is hard to navigate, and supplies can get wiped out fast due to the high demand. It is best to plan a day during the weekday or evening to shop if possible.
Choose budding versus blooming plants
It is only natural to be drawn to lush plants with lots of new blooms when shopping for flowers, but you should avoid the temptation. Look for plants with a lot of buds versus blooms for the best results. It is natural for all plants to undergo some transplant shock when planted in the ground or in pots, but budding plants handle the transition better than those that have already bloomed.
Do a walk-through of the garden center first
It is best to walk through the garden center first before you start putting plants and supplies in your cart. This lets you see which plants stand out to you and gives you time to evaluate what you truly want. If you start adding plants to your cart right away, you may end up with more plants than you can manage.
Doing a walk-through also gives you a chance to spend some time reading about the growing conditions for each plant. This can help you select plants with similar growing conditions to use in pots or together in sections of your yard or garden.
Ask for recommendations
Your garden center staff can be a great source of information regarding the plants that grow best in your area. Another advantage of going when the garden center is not crowded is you can get to know the staff and have your questions answered.
Visiting a garden center for the first time is an exciting experience for first-time gardeners. However, with all the beautiful flowers and plants to choose from, it can be a little bit intimidating knowing what to purchase. Having a plan before you go will help you navigate your garden center like a pro to get your gardening adventure off to a great start.
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