Let's be honest, gardening takes a lot of time and effort- especially when you're wanting to achieve and maintain a neat, show-worthy, colourful garden. Even when gardening is a passionate hobby of yours, there are only so many hours in a day, and with the amount of pruning, weeding, and general maintenance required to upkeep plants, us gardeners often find ourselves running out of time.
As much as we all love plants and the look of them, the maintenance side of things is never as enjoyable, and that's why we've put together a little list of our gardening secrets that will always save you time- so you have more time to spend admiring your lovely garden!
1. Pick the right plants
Choosing the right plants to grow is one of the best ways to save time. Ensure you pick plants with the same levels of watering, and the amount of sunlight needed. Similarly, if you don't want to spend time worrying about pests and diseases in your garden, pick out disease resistant plants. Creating your garden is really all about planning beforehand...
Write down a short list of the the aspect levels/exposure type/supply of water in your garden, as well as any other qualities, and pop a message to our team to help you pick the right plants! We're more than happy to help.
Contrarily, you can use our filter menu, on the left hand side of our plant collection pages, to help pick out the exact plants you want with the correct features/qualities- it's as simple as that!
2. Mulch smartly
Mulching insulates the soil, retains moisture, and protects the roots from excessive hot/cold weather- so even when the weather is dry, the roots will still get enough water to keep them thriving and looking their best.
As well as this, mulching smartly can supress weeds, keeping them at bay. Often weeding is one of the peskiest things to do when it comes to gardening as they just keep coming back! That's why putting mulch down is one the best things you can do for your plants.
However, mulching can often be timely, especially when you have to do it more than once in a year. But don't worry, this is where our secret comes in...there's an intelligent way to go about it. Buy large amounts of Winter mulch which can be placed all around the garden at the beginning of Spring. This will save you lots of time, as the mulch will protect your plants for the rest of the season- you only have to do it once! Though it will be expensive, it's totally worth it (especially when you have little time on your hands).
3. Choose low-maintenance plants
Sticking to low-maintenance plants is another very effective way to cut down the time you spend upkeeping your garden.
Gardening is hard work, and some people enjoy that- but for those of us who don't want our passionate hobby to be hard work, or you just don't enjoy maintaining plants, choosing low-maintenance plants is the best way around it! There's no need to spend your time on plants that require tonnes of work, when you pick just as lovely plants that require minimal effort.
So here are some of our best recommendations for keeping your garden low-maintenance:
4. Buy companion plants
Buying companion plants ensures prevents you from having to deal with an invasion of pests that take a massive toll on your lovely plants. Whether that's ants, snails, slugs or mites, they're all pesky little things when it comes to plants! Here are our top 2 recommendations when it comes to repelling insects- ensure you take extra care of the plants, and they'll do their very best job in repelling the pests!
5. Leave your plants to self-seed
Self-seeding plants are very beneficial. Not only will they save you money, but it also means you don't have to spend time planting new plants every year as they grow all by themselves! Another handy little way to spare some time...
Please note, a lot of self-seeding plants are invasive, so if this is something you do not want happening then ensure you pick your plants carefully.
6. Keep things simple
Another secret to having a low-maintenance garden is just by keeping it simple! Having a stunning garden doesn't have to be made of a lot of hard work and plants that require consistent attention- pick a mixture of low-maintenance plants (with similar features), and you'll be good to go!
This tip is especially recommended for gardening newbies. Grow fewer plants, picking ones that are easier to handle or you know more about- this way you won't end up worrying about how to look after them, and can instead focus on enjoying them!
7. Leave all the pruning for later
Simple but so effective, leaving pruning for later can save you tonnes of time. Focus on pruning your plants all together, once a year rather than twice, or just choose plants that don't require pruning at all! It's as easy as that. Most plants can be pruned at the same time- if you're not sure, do a bit of research before buying or speak to our team...we're happy and ready to help!
8. Choose the right time for weeding
Weeding is a job none of us enjoy, lets be honest. It's time consuming and tests your patience.
That being said, to make it a little bit easier, we recommend choosing the right time. It's best to do weeding when it's been raining and the ground is still moist. The rain softens the soil, and makes it easier to pull out weeds by their roots (which prevents them from growing back again). It's really as simple as that.
Being able to remove the weeds easier makes it much quicker, and therefore a less time-consuming job!
9. Keep your tools ready to use
Looking after your tools is just as important as looking after your garden. It's very important you spend time cleaning and sharpening (or repairing!) any tools you have and use, so that when it comes to carrying out your gardening jobs, your tools are all ready. Geared up and ready to use.
10. Select plants that don't need pruning
Often we pick plants that look stunning at first sight, and feel would look incredible as a feature in our garden- but we don't consider the maintenance side of things. Pruning is another timely gardening job, and we get mixed up as to when the right time is to prune a specific plant, and how you should do it. Therefore, to push this risk aside, picking plants that don't need pruning will remove all those latter doubts and fears that come after buying a plant. Simply do a bit of research or speak to our team, before you dive in and order your plants.
Contrarily, here are some of our favourite plants that need no pruning or very little: Guelder Rose (Viburnum opulus), New Zealand Privet (Griselinia Littoralis), English Holly (Ilex aquifolium), Skimmia Rubella (Skimmia japonica 'Rubella'), Rhododendron 'Cosmopolitan.'
Now that's all our top secrets shared, you no longer have to worry about spending so much time maintaining your garden!
Still haven't got your plants? Go check out our wonderful variety of hedging plants...Don't forget to use the filter menu to pick out the exact plants you want!