Laurie Garretson: Gardening tips that might make your gardening chores a little easier | Home and garden

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March has arrived, and for many of us that means gardening time. Gardening can be a very healthy and rewarding task. Yes, it takes work, but exposure to plants and green spaces is known to benefit our mental and physical health. Perks we can all use.

Here are some gardening tips that might make your gardening chores a little easier.

Let’s start with the sun. Most edible plants need at least six hours of sunlight to thrive. Start with good, nutrient-rich, well-drained soil.

Plant near a water point. It’s no fun having to lug containers of water around when your plants are thirsty.

If you have a yard with garden beds and a lawn, then I bet you occasionally struggle with weeds. Weeds have disadvantages for our yards and gardens. Weeds can rob all of our plants of nutrients, space, light and water. Weeds can also be hosts to pests and diseases, and will invade your space very quickly.

Mulch can be a gardener’s best friend when it comes to controlling weeds. Weeds like open areas, so use mulch to cover bare soil, or you can plant more plants.

Avoid plowing when possible. Plowing brings in all kinds of seeds, perhaps some that have been in your soil for many years. Convert to “no-till” gardening, as many gardeners do. If you want to plow an area, only rake the top inch or two of soil. Direct seeding helps preserve and improve your soil, while allowing the soil structure to remain intact and without affecting microbial life.

Until next time, let’s all try to garden with nature, not against it, and maybe all our weeds will turn into wildflowers.

Laurie Garretson is a gardener and nursery owner in Victoria. Send your gardening questions to [email protected] or c/o the attorney, PO Box 1518, Victoria, TX 77902.

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