A Healthy Garden Calls for Maintenance: Some Useful Tips
Garden Maintenance can be challenging. Despite all the care and look after, our plants catch diseases. All this happen so mystically that we keep wondering about its causes. Does your mind get equipped with questions like how did it happen? Will, it spread? Will you be able to get rid of it or not? Or will it kill your plants?
Your plants catch diseases when the below provided three conditions coincide:
- You have a plant that can get diseases (a host)
- A pathogen that can pounce on your plant (fungus, virus or bacterium)
- The suitable environmental conditions (humidity, drought) to promote the attack of the pathogen.
These three requirements combine and form a triangle. It becomes necessary to remove one arm of this triangle to burst the bubble.
There is no point in waiting for the disease to take over and ruin your beautiful garden. We have enlisted 10 precautionary tips that will defend your plants and will ensure you a healthy garden.
Examine plants before buying them
The problem starts when you introduce the disease in your garden. With any new plant, you bring lots of things into your garden. A disease can be one of them.
It is difficult to identify the health of a plant just by looking at it. You can identify the good health or sickness of a plant by observing its roots. This is a common formula which is implacable on almost every plant. The roots should be firm, white and spread throughout the root ball.
You can also check the pictures from magazines or the internet about how a healthy plant should look like.
Use fully composted yard waste only
It is not necessary for every waste to decompose at the same time. Some take lesser time and others may need a heck of it. The pathogens often die in the process of decomposing because of high-temperatures. The debris you have put for decomposing may have the infection causing pathogens in them. They will survive if the process is not completed. Such compost should not be used in your garden and sensitive plants. It is more or less inviting infection to your place.
Keep an eye on the bugs
You may have a virus or bacteria in your garden but, they cannot enter the plant on their own. They need an opening to enter and start their purpose. Bugs provide them with these entries. They cause enough damage to the plant by creating these openings.
A few insects also act as pathogen carriers. There are many plants that catch diseases through the bacteria or virus carried by bugs only.
Clean up the garden fall
Cleaning out the garden fall is a must whether you live in a moderate or high-temperature place. It is an effective deterrent to new diseases and a prevents for older diseases as well.
Dead leaves are an open invitation to the sickness and this debris can attack the new leaves as well. Some of the common plant diseases can be dramatically reduced if the dead leaf falls are timely removed.
Moreover, even the winter stems and foliage should be removed before the arrival of the spring.
Use correct fertilizer
You need to optimize the correct amount and kind of fertilizer for the plant. Too many fertilizers can badly affect the water-absorbing capacity of the roots by burning them. It makes them susceptible to weather conditions like drought, cold and heat.
The leaf spots can affect the plant nutrients. The bigger and stronger plants fight off the diseases while the smaller plants fall prey to it.
It is important to get your soil tested through some local store. They will provide you with accurate information about the nutrients of the soil and you will be able to figure out the right kind of fertilizers for your garden.
There are plants that are capable of fighting off the diseases instead of succumbing to it. For example, the “VFN resistant” variety of tomatoes is resistant to certain fungi.
However, it is difficult to find such tags on flowers and plants because they are hardly tagged. Many varieties of rose plants are available that are resistant to powdery mildew and black spots.
You can take help of nursery employees or fellow gardeners to identify these varieties of plants. Reference and guidance books can also help you.
Pruning at the right time
Pruning and trimming the herbs and shrubs should be done in time. There is no point in waiting for spring when your plant needs this particular care in winters. They get infected in winters and it allows the plant to get infected while in a dormant state.
Pruning the plants in late winters prevent it from getting infected. SO, when the spring arrives the plants grow naturally and perfectly.
Broken limbs should also be trimmed before the arrival of spring to ensure the proper growth and development of the plant.
Use sharp tools to make proper cuts that can heal.
Choose and site plants appropriately
Imagine what will happen if you keep a shade plant in the sun, it will grow poorly and its growth will hinder. Planting the plant at the right site is the first step to the successful gardening.
The defense system of the plants is quite similar to that of humans. As soon as a plant or insect attack, it swings into action. They cannot react or act properly if put under stress. They lose their strength to fight off or recover. Therefore, it is important to keep in their naturally healthy site.
Water your plants properly
The pathogens need water as much as a plant needs it. Pathogens keep looking for appropriate conditions of soil, water, and environment in order to reproduce and grow. This is why; it is important to choose the proper watering method to avoid these conditions.
Never use hoses as they accomplish the goals of pathogens. Make sure to water the roots of the plant properly.
Avoid putting water in the leaves because moist leaves serve as the best host to the diseases. Overhead sprinkling should be avoided at any cost. However, you can choose this option when you are sure that the water of the leaves will get evaporated soon.
Don’t crowd plants
There should be proper spacing between the plants. Crowded plants create a moist atmosphere that gives birth to several diseases. A better airflow can be the perfect solution in that case.
Closely placed plants fight for light, water, and nutrients. Such plants are more susceptible to diseases.
Your one step can put your long-time efforts in the garden into risk. Never do such a thing and ensure the safe and healthy life life of your garden.