10 Easy Care Garden Success Tips from Karen Brown

Inspired to start your own garden, but a little overwhelmed? Thinking of doing something

with that bare patch of lawn, but a little short on time? We have some tips that might help:

1. Think "woody". Shrubs come in all sizes and shapes, interesting foliage and flower

color. Once planted, their care is minimal and they will grow for years with no further

digging. Combine texture and color for interest.

2. Water your new plantings at least every two weeks the first year, if Mother Nature doesn't give you an inch of rain in each 2-week period.

3. Rain? No it doesn't rain all the time in Oregon. Water where needed, especially during

May through September. See #2.

4. No bare soil! Use dense ground cover plants or thick mulches to prevent weed growth

from wind-blown seeds. Remove any sprouts as soon as you see them. This will save you

tons of time in the long term.

5. Do you like high maintenance plants? Group them for color impact in your most

important place, rather than spreading them here and there. More color with less work.

6. Container plantings need more care than plants in well prepared soil in the ground,

however... a few well cared for containers can have a big impact without too much care. Just remember to water and fertilize regularly to keep them beautiful.

7. Take a tip from your neighborhood. Choose to like and grow plants you see thriving, rather than insisting on fighting with plants that don't like the climate. You can change your favorites more easily than you can force a plant to change its nature.

8. Put the right plant in the right place. Find out how big it is going to be before you plant

it. Don't set yourself up for a lot of pruning to try to make a big plant fit a small space.

Pruning is hard work, and a heavily pruned plant never looks its best.

9. Easy care doesn't mean no care at all. Try to maintain a neat appearance in all seasons. A little touch up, cleanup, fix up now and then is easier than a major overhaul all at once, and it keeps you and your neighbors happier.

10. If you really hate caring for a garden, you can always move into a condo with a landscaping service and enjoy someone else's work – but where is the fun in that?

Happy Gardening!

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