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Gardening Hacks for Easy, Lasting Plants and Flowers

Spring is here, which means it’s planting time! Use these tips and tricks to make planting quicker and easier and to make sure your plants last.

By
Bruce and Jeanne Lubin,
May 10, 2016

Gardening Hacks for Spring Planting

Easy Way to Keep Rows Straight

Here’s a great tip if you have trouble planting your garden in neat rows. Run a hose in a straight line along the ground, then plant your new seedlings along the hose. Remove the hose and you’ll have a perfect-looking flowerbed!

Quick Way to Plant Seeds

Here’s a fast and easy way to plant small seeds like carrots while still making sure they’re perfectly spaced. Fill an old salt or spice shaker with the seeds and some sand, then sprinkle the mixture into the dirt when it’s time to plant. For larger seeds, use an empty Parmesan cheese shaker.

Are You Planting Seeds Deep Enough?

When you plant seeds, you want to make sure you bury them at the correct depth, about 1 inch deep. Save time and energy by marking 1-inch measurements on the handles of your tools instead of using a ruler.

DIY Plant Marker

Not sure which seed you planted where? Write the name of the plant on a plastic knife and shove it into the ground nearby.

How to Keep Extra Seeds Fresh for Next Year

If you have more seeds than you can use this spring, store them in a sealed container in your freezer. The cold will keep them fresh until next year.

Keep Weeds Away from Your Plants

If you use mulch in your garden, use this easy way to keep weeds away from plants. Wet newspapers and layer them around the plants, making sure to allow room for the stems to grow. Then cover the newspapers with mulch or wood chips. The newspaper will form a barrier that doesn’t allow anything to sprout through.

The Easiest Garden Plants

If you’ve never gardened before, you can still have an amazingly productive garden with very little skill—just stick to these plants, which are less finicky and easier to grow: For vegetables, carrots, zucchini, radishes, beets, lettuce, peppers, peas, and spinach. For flowers, try black-eyed Susans, daylilies, moss roses, cosmos, and marigolds. Also make sure to check out PlantNative.org, where you search your zip code to find flowers, shrubs, trees, vines, and grasses that are native to your area, and easier to keep alive!

For Crawling Critters

If you’re planting small plants in your garden, stop an insect problem before it starts with petroleum jelly. Smearing petroleum jelly all over each plant’s stem protects it from crawling bugs like slugs, ants, and other plant-eaters. Why? Because they can’t climb up the plant to get a bite! Here are some other easy ways to get rid of garden pests.

For more great gardening tips, check out our Gardening and Yard Tips board on Pinterest. And make sure to sign up for our newsletter or follow us on Facebook!

Image courtesy of Shutterstock

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