It is best to start planning your summer garden in the winter. Measure and lay out your yard and when the ground is dry, go ahead and dig the perimeter of the garden. Use a garden hose to place your shape, to map out the area, and design of the garden. The hose will hold the shape as you dig, but will be flexible enough to allow for any adjustments that you will most likely make.

Remove slugs and snails from your garden by hand. These creatures can be damaging to your plants and will, in time, destroy your garden. Snails and slugs can easily be plucked from your favorite flowers. Then just put them in a jar with water and a couple drops of dish soap.

Create a certain mood for your garden. Just as with interior design, one of the most exciting aspects of garden design is using color to create a mood or feeling. Use soft blues and purples for a cool and soothing atmosphere, yellows for cheerfulness, and reds and oranges to create excitement. If you are uncomfortable when deciding on colors, choose plants with grey-green or silvery foliage to mix in with your flowers. They will act as a ‘buffer’ between incompatible colors and link different color schemes.

Grow hydrangeas for their large showy blooms. Most varieties do equally well in sun or partial shade. They will tolerate any kind of soil if it is well-drained and moist. The color of many hydrangeas is affected by the pH value of the soil, which affects how much iron is available for the plant to take up. The more iron in the soil – the bluer the flower. If you want the bluest of blue hydrangeas, be sure to plant them in acid soil, as this has the most iron. When little iron is available, the flowers will tend to be pink. In a neutral soil, you may actually get both pink and blue flowers on the same shrub.

Start your plants from cuttings to save loads of money! Plants are expensive these days. Many, however, can be started by taking clippings from other plants. All that’s required for some is just putting the cut ends in a glass of water. For the more difficult species, just dip the ends in some rooting hormone and push them into some damp sand.

Gardening is a pastime that really gives back. It brings benefits to ourselves, to our family, and to our planet. So, turn your thoughts to outside, and to the pleasure to be had by tending our own piece of the earth, and work on that garden!

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