Gardening tips and tricks

Posted: Feb 16 2022

Spending time in the garden not only creates a wonderful space for you to enjoy at home, but it comes with some unexpected health benefits too! For example, it can boost your levels of Vitamin D, which benefits your bones and immune system. It can also have mood-boosting benefits and be a great form of exercise.

But what if your thumbs aren't naturally green? Health Partners members have shared their best gardening tips to help your garden come up roses.

2202gardening

Planting tips

  • To 'quick start' tomatoes, plant them deep (remove bottom shoots on seedling) and then cover with clear plastic until about 30cm high. Feed with Seasol regularly. Ian
  • Always plant basil with new tomatoes to keep away bugs. Pam
  • when planting your new plants, include a piece of perforated plastic tube vertically in the hole you dig for the plant. It will avoid water running off the surface and ensure you can get water to the plant roots so the new plants can better cope with the heat of summer. Denise
  • If planning to plant rose bushes, go for standard roses rather than the 'bush' type. This way, not only can you plant smaller flowering plants e.g. Candy Tuft (Iberus) underneath, but also when weeding you will do so comfortably without getting a multitude of scratches! Eugenia
  • When trying to strike cuttings, strip most foliage off and dip the cut end into honey before planting. Amanda
  • When growing cucumbers try tickling the flower of the female plant with the male plant flower. It works amazingly and I've had good crops the past 3 years.

Pruning tips

  • Just a good trim of shrubs when they grow unruly, especially after all the rain, can make all the difference and be just like a good haircut and sculpt the garden to look special again. Elaine
  • Keep picking the dead heads from your roses and they will flower longer. Pam

Nourishing your garden

  • A spoon full of sugar added to the middle of tree ferns in spring helps them to flourish. Amanda
  • My gardening tip is to go natural. I only use compost from my compost bin (food scraps and peels) twice a year after aerating the top inch of soil. I also use the weekly 'gunk' from the fish pond and filter.
  • My favourite gardening tip is to sprinkle Epsom Salts around my veggies - it makes them flourish and the fruits are sooo much sweeter!
  • Feed your staghorn banana skins.
  • When you're watering Ferns, try not to water the leaves because when the sun shines on them the leaves may burn, change colour and even drop off.

Stopping insects and pests

  • When planting out new seedlings in the garden, especially now as you plant out your vegetable patch, sprinkle coffee grounds around at the time of planting and this will keep earwigs from eating them. Janette
  • A gardening tip that really works: Grow nasturtiums around the base of your rose bushes and you will never see aphids again. Alicia
  • Put a takeaway container with holes drilled in it above the liquid to trap earwigs. Place a couple of containers in the garden with Linseed Oil in it and the lid on, the holes need to be drilled above the Linseed Oil level so it doesn't leak out and the Earwigs will go in through the holes. An environmentally safe way to control the little devils. Janice
  • I place crushed egg shells onto the garden beds, particularly with new seedlings so that snails and other pests cannot eat my new plantings. It also adds calcium to the soil and recycles products which would usually be discarded into the bin. Much better to recycle egg shells.
  • Use beer to kill slaters (and slugs and snails).

Recipe for weed spray

  1. Mix half a cup of Epsom salts with a litre of vinegar and small amount of liquid dish detergent (the detergent simply helps the liquid stick to the weeds).
  2. Put the mixture into a spray bottle and spray it on any weeds that pop up.
  3. Within 2 or 3 days the weeds are dead and can simply be swept away! Just be sure to avoid spraying any plants that you want to survive! Sandra

Final thoughts

  • Spray all your gardening tools with Teflon, none of the dust sticks - so easy.
  • Buy a 'Composta' which houses worms and a garden around a dome, grows herbs etc.
  • I find gardening very therapeutic but the best tip I can offer is to listen to your body. It will tell you when you have done enough, then put the kettle on, have a cup of green tea, relax and look at what you've achieved. Lesley
  • My best gardening tip is do a little all the time, and you will enjoy your garden far more
Margaret Check Your Cover

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Posted: Feb 16 2022

Disclaimer

The information contained here is of a general nature and does not take into account your personal medical situation. The information is not a substitute for independent professional medical advice and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease or used for therapeutic purposes. Should you require specific medical information, please seek advice from your healthcare practitioner. Health Partners does not accept any liability for any injury, loss or damage incurred by use of or reliance on the information provided. While we have prepared the information carefully, we can’t guarantee that it is accurate, complete or up-to-date. And while we may mention goods or services provided by others, we aren’t specifically endorsing them and can’t accept responsibility for them.

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