Cool new concepts for gardening
By ARA Content
Home & Garden - posted Mon., May. 7, 2012
One of the driving forces in gardening is many American’s pursuit of healthier eating and greener living. This means that the new face of gardening has begun to change considerably in recent years. Today’s gardeners are younger and more urban than traditional gardeners, therefore, making unique impressions on the green world.
So, what’s cool about gardening?
From growing vegetables in the front yard to creating an edible wall of green on the balcony, gardening is not limited to just a half-acre plot in the country anymore. Now, gardeners use any space available for a garden, no matter how urban or small. The key is adding individuality or personality to the garden in the form of handmade sculptures, water features, bird feeders or even the variety of unique heirloom plants that are used. Sustainability is also very important. Plants that serve a dual purpose –like low-growing thyme used as a ground cover in a small area, or a cucumber plant that has been trained to grow up a trellis as a green screen – are excellent examples of how many gardeners have transformed traditional ideas of gardening. Looking at gardening and plants in new ways can lead to some great discoveries – and may even increase the productivity of a green space.
How can you join in the gardening movement? Here are some helpful tips to get started.
Maximize space: Even if you only have a window, and no outdoor space, you can have a garden. An herb garden can be grown on a window ledge in the kitchen. No ledge? No problem. Just hang a hook from the ceiling and grow your plants in a hanging basket. For those with little outdoor space, try container gardening on the patio or use an outside fence or railing to grow a vertical garden. If you have a sunny space in the yard, create a small garden using the new Miracle-Gro Ultimate Raised Garden Bed. This easy-to-use kit snaps together and can easily be customized to fit in nearly any space. Simply add nutrient-enriched soil and plant the garden on a patio, deck, rooftop or balcony.
Redefine terms: Produce plants are for vegetable gardens and landscaping plants are for the front yard... right? Not necessarily. The great thing about gardening is that the only necessary rules are the ones Mother Nature created: plants need sunlight, water, food and soil with good drainage. Other than that, do not be afraid to mix it up. Plant vegetables in the front yard, use strawberries in a hanging basket or plant herbs for groundcover along a path. Grow what you like that will thrive in your climate, even if it is not what your neighbors are growing.
Stay true to yourself: If your favorite color is blue, then plant blue flowers. If you love salsa, then plant a “salsa garden” by using tomatoes, cilantro, onions and jalapenos. Add your own touch and make it personal.
Experiment: Although gardening can be seen as a science, it should also be looked as an art. Gardeners should feel free to experiment and express themselves through their gardens. Let your green space reflect your home, your interests and your individuality. Make it a tradition to try at least one new thing every year, and you may be surprised how much you learn along the way.