Category: Home Improvement
Doing your bit for green cover is not just a catch phrase any more. Home gardening has come a long way from being a post-retirement hobby to an essential daily chore for the usual office-going crowd. The easiest way to contribute to the environment is to probably grow as many potted plants in your balcony/porch as possible. However, taking care of potted plants is no easy task. Constant monitoring is key to a lively garden. Of several issues that might crop up for a home gardener, one is how to ensure the plants are able to sustain during the scorching summer season. In many parts of the world, especially regions with tropical climate, temperatures may soar beyond 40 degrees Celsius, which is hard for humans and plants alike. Fortunately, there are a few simple tips that might help you ensure the greenery of your balcony is retained through these temperatures.
Choose your plants carefully
Similar to the concept of crop-rotation in agriculture, even potted plants need to be rotated. Knowing which plants to keep growing in summer can save you a lot of heartache from when a non-adapting plant dies of over-heat. Choose plants that are hardy by nature. Do your own research rather than relying on the version of your local nursery keeper. Some examples of hardy summer plants could be cactus, summer vegetable plants (cucumber, onions, tomatoes, chillies, pumpkin, to name a few), summer flowering plants (hibiscus, lilies, petunia, jasmine, and so on), non-flowering plants with light green or whitish leaves, any other plant that looks hardy. Be sure to plant less number of flowering plants as compared to non-flowering plants, because flowering plants in general require more care regardless of the season.
Although it is quite a no-brainer that plants need to be watered regularly and prudently, it is surprising to find how several home gardeners get it wrong. Watering is not enough, it is important to use just the right amount and the right way to administer it. In peak summer, constant monitoring is important, because most plants would need to be watered twice a day, once in the morning, and once in the evening. Although the morning water is an absolute necessity, the need for watering in the evening may vary depending on the hardiness of the plant. Some plants just seem to soak up all the water you can give, while others do fine with a bit less. The key is to monitor the top of the soil for dryness and cracks. If the soil is dry, add just as much water as is needed for the surface to be wet again. If it is cracked, water a bit more deeply, because you should have ideally watered it before the cracks began to appear. Along with the soil, it is also essential to sprinkle water on the leaves every other day or so, to make up for the complete loss of rainfall.
Potted plants need regular help with fertilizers in all seasons, and the summer season demands the most. It does not mean that you need to increase the frequency of supplementing with fertilizers, it just means that you need to strictly maintain your fertilizing routine without a miss. Unlike during the monsoon season, when plenty of rainfall ensures high frequency of fertilizers is not essential (although it does not harm), during summer, all your plants have to hold on to for nutrition are the fertilizers.
If you need to update your current garden furniture or are planning to buy some for next year, here are some great ways you can save some cash while also adding furniture to your porch or patio this summer.
Purchase Garden Fundamentals Out Of Season
Garden furniture is a seasonal business and so buying out of season will usually see lower costs. Buy garden furniture, BBQ’s and grills toward the end of the summer months to save a lot of money. Most retailers offer end of season rebates, so by holding off on those enormous buys, you could grab yourself a fantastic deal.
Separate Your Perennials
Dig out your wide-covering and expansive perennials and separate them from the roots using a spade or fork – doing this will give you a few small plants which you would then be able to give to friends or move to another piece of the garden. Reusing and altering the plants you already have, instead of buying new things will save you a lot of money in the long run.
Put Your Money Into Best Buy Items
The consumer website ‘Which?’ Tests a scope of garden items for you, to ensure that you can spend your money on the right things. However, you don’t need to just listen to internet reviews and you don’t just need to spend loads of money to get decent items. Lawnmowers can range wildly in price: on Amazon, for example, you can find one for £50 or one for £900, but the £50 still has over 4.5 stars out of 5 from over 400 reviews. A small amount of research on your part will yield the best results.
Develop From Seed
Planting seeds as opposed to purchasing more develop plants will spare up loads of money. Often times, a bag of seeds will contain more than if needed, so why not share them, with a friend or loved one who also enjoys horticulture? A bag of 10,000 Poppy Seeds, for example could cost you less than £2.00, whereas a set of three fully-grown Poppy plants can be as much as £20. You don’t need to be a math whizz to see the benefits.
Reuse Your Left Over Fertilizer
Reusing last year’s will not be a terrible plan, but it certainly won’t be the 100% most effective way of helping your plants. So, do you throw it out? Certainly not! Just cut it with a newer bag and use that to get great results without wasting last year’s fertiliser. That is, of course, unless it’s a wet fertiliser or has been exposed to the wet. In which case it will have negative impacts and you should just throw it on your compost pile instead.
Update Your Furniture
To switch up your garden decor, you don’t need to buy a totally new garden furniture set. Instead, check whether you can work with what you have and maybe update it. If your garden set is made out of metal, you can buy shower paint, mainly intended for outdoor furniture, to revitalise the look. If you have porch furniture that is made out of wood, you can recolour it an alternate shading to give it a different look.
Another excellent method to give your garden furniture a second life is by buying new cushions and pads for your porch furniture. It is a great deal less expensive to update just your porch cushions and pillows than it is to get an altogether new set.
Shop At The End Of Summer
Finally, and admittedly similar to buying out of season, be sure to shop just at the close of summer, when shops know the garden furniture will have a sharp decline in purchases. The prices will drop too, as the shops try to get rid of their excess stock and make way for the winter collection., allowing you to swoop in a grab some great deals.