Top Gardening Tips
Spring is here! In the Upstate, we've been experiencing beautiful weather, and every where you turn, something new is blooming. With more time at home, now is a great opportunity to appreciate and even improve your outdoor space.
May is also Mental Health Awareness Month, and gardening can greatly benefit your mental health. Studies have shown that humans feel more at ease and relaxed in nature. Plus, the physical exercise involved releases endorphins, the creativity of it allows us to express ourselves, and gardening is also a way of caring for something, which gives us purpose and a sense of pride.
Here are our top May gardening to-dos to help your mental health and your yard thrive this summer!
Check your irrigation system - Before the heat of summer arrives, test your irrigation system to make sure it's running effectively. Replace malfunctioning sprinkler heads and ensure that water is being delivered to the right areas.
Stay on top of weeding - Tackle weeds early in the season so they don't get ahead of you as the temperatures rise.
Mulch - Mulching your beds with shredded bark, pine straw, compost, grass clippings, or even newspaper can help preserve moisture in hot weather and deter weeds.
Prune and deadhead - Now is the time to prune spring-blossoming shrubs and climbing roses after they bloom. Deadhead spring bulbs, pansies, and primroses after flowering.
Plant herbs - Now is a great time to start your herb garden. Frost-sensitive herbs like basil, dill, fennel, rosemary, and cilantro can be planted in May. They should get 6-8 hours of sunlight per day. And remember, the best time to harvest them is in the morning, right after the dew dries. Keep them in water until it's time to cook!
Grow warm-season vegetables - Tomato, okra, squash, eggplant, melon, corn, and cucumbers can all be planted now. You can also grow beans. Try a variety - some that you can eat fresh and others to dry for later use.
Add hanging baskets - Add a splash of color to your porch or patio with flowering hanging baskets. These require minimal care and will last all summer. Water everyday, fertilize every 10 days, and trim faded flowers to encourage new blooms.
Use vines to camouflage - Fast-growing vines can be used to cover up buildings, garages, or fences that lack in beauty. There are plenty of options, but keep in mind that some may require regular pruning to keep them in check!
Add some tropical elements - Hibiscus, mandevilla, variegated ginger, canna, bird-of-paradise, palm, and ti plant are relatively easy to care for and can make your backyard feel like paradise.
Bring color to the shade - Hosta and heuchera (often called coral bells) are easy perennials that come in a wide variety of sizes and shapes to bring color to the shady spots of your landscaping!
With these tips, we're sure your yard will be flush this summer!