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Selecting The Best Plants For Your Garden

Apr 7, 2008
Which are the right plants for the conditions in your garden? We often buy plants on impulse only to discover when we get them home that there is nowhere in the garden that really suits them. Before buying plants, carefully look at your garden to determine how much sun and shade it gets, whether the soil is well drained or waterlogged, and whether your planting area is sheltered or receives gusts of wind. You'll then be equipped to buy the best plants for your situation; shade-loving plants for the sheltered areas, sun-lovers for the warm spots, drought-resistant plants for the dry areas (which may be either sunny or shaded), and swamp plants for the poorly-drained parts.

It is also important to test your soil first to check the pH level of your soil and what kind of nutrients you will need to add, if any. Is the soil acid or alkaline? Most plants prefer soil that is slightly acidic, but there are plants that must have alkaline soil to grow. You can alter the soil's pH level, but it's much easier to simply plant for the soil you have.

Now you are ready to plant. Will you plant in groups or individually? If you plant 'one of everything' your garden may seem patchy. Group plantings are organized, harmonious and you can vary the color for interest.

Before planting, place your chosen plants around the garden bed in their pots to see how they will look. Re-arrange them until you are satisfied. Grouping plants in sets of threes or fives usually looks better than planting in groups of even numbers. Be sure that you have an interesting combination of colors and textures of plants. Tall plants should go to the back or center if your garden will be viewed equally from all sides. Try to keep your plants away from trees. The tree roots are will steal all the nutrients and water needed for your flowers.

The correct color scheme is one way to maintain the harmony in your garden. Imagine the color of the flowers when they are in bloom. Some colors may clash with others, but can still be planted side-by-side if they bloom at different times. Foliage color is also important. Many flower plants have silver, grey or purplish foliage that is just as attractive as the flower. This means that they are still pretty well past the blooming season and so have added value.
About the Author
Kevin Rockwell, a gardening enthusiast, writes and publishes articles on various aspects of gardening and landscaping. He helps manage a webstore for people wishing to find affordable garden decor and outdoor accessories online.
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