Gardening blunders that take a toll on plants

We all have killed a plant or two before… on accident. Just this week I put my brand-new stevia plant to premature death, all because I forgot it even existed. I hadn’t put it in the ground, and I hadn’t watered it. No recollection of ever owning the thing. Now it’s dead.

There are plenty of other gardening bloopers and blunders that send plants to an early grave. Here are five mistakes to avoid… in addition to the one I made.

1.) Don’t simply stick a plant in the ground. You have to prepare the soil with organic matter, compost or fertilizer. Good dirt makes a difference. Add worms to aerate and improve quality of the soil.

2.) Be careful what you weed for. You can accidentally pull out a valuable plant while getting rid of those that don’t count. If you have doubts about the green, leafy thing poking through, leave it until you know what it is for sure.

3.) Too much water can be a bad thing. Over-watering can kill a plant just as well as under-watering. Supersoaking causes the roots to rot. To ensure plants stay alive, water only if the soil feels dry.

4.) Don’t prune in the fall season. Never cut back your plants during that time because you will disrupt its energy storage, which is in the roots. Once you prune, the energy is sent back into the plant– too early.

5.) Pick plants that are able to grow in an appropriate climate. A plant’s labeled hardiness does not lie. If a plant wasn’t meant to survive a harsh winter, it really will die. if you prefer a tropical-looking plant for winter months, a camellia japonica shrub will work.

For more gardening tips and advice on how not to kill your plants, Marvin Gardens can consult you.

Photo source: pfly; Bonsai Care Basics; Nemo’s great uncle