Introduction: How to Start a Beautiful Garden
It's springtime again, and you're looking at the cement in your backyard that is supposedly called dirt. You want to have a beautiful garden, but it seems impossible. Well, if you have a little time, money, and energy, this instructable will show you how to make that happen.
This instructable will show you how to make your tough, weed filled backyard into something beautiful.
-*Garden Soil (Starting at $5.99 for 1 cu ft. at Orchard Supply Hardware)
-*Mulch (Starting at $5.99 for 2 cu. ft. at Orchard)
-Gardening Supplies (Shovel, Hoe, Digging Fork, Gloves)
-Flower, Vegetable, or Fruit Seeds (Starting at $1.49 at Orchard)
*Depending on what you will be growing, some soils will be better than others. Also, the color of mulch is up to you, but light colored mulches will work the best.
**Please read through all the steps before purchasing anything so you know how much of everything you need to buy.
Step 1: Judge Your Dirt
For this step, minimal work is needed. Simply go outside and go through a few quick steps to see if your backyard has good or bad dirt.
1. Look at the dirt in your backyard. Does it look dry? Does it have a lot of rocks?
2. Take a shovel and try to dig about an inch deep in any area. Is it difficult to do this?
3. (Optional) Water your dirt. Does it take a while for the water to be absorbed into the soil?
If you answered yes to any of the questions above, you probably have bad dirt. If you answered no to all of the questions, read the next step then skip to the Planting step.
Step 2: Seeds, Dirt, and Mulch
It is really important that you know what you want to plant in your backyard before buying anything. If you a big backyard, then it shouldn't matter what you plant because you probably have room for it all. If you have a small backyard, you have a harder decision. Really think about what you want to plant, then go get it.
The dirt you buy will depend on what seeds you are planting. For example, sunflowers like a more sandy dirt. Also, measure the area you will be digging up so you know how much soil you need to buy to replace it. (It's better to buy too much dirt than too little.)
The Mulch will help the soil underneath to stay moist. Light colored mulch will work best.
Step 3: Getting Rid of the Bad Dirt
For this step you will need:
-A bucket or garbage can
This is by far the hardest step of this instructable. This will require strength and a lot of time. First you need to decide how deep you will be digging and over what area. Six inches would be a good start, but the more the merrier. (This is the part where after you know where and how much you are digging up, you can buy your dirt and mulch.)
Use a hoe or a garden fork to break up the dirt as much as you can.
Shovel the dirt you have gotten loose into a garbage can or bucket.
Repeat the previous two steps until you have taken out as much dirt as desired.
Step 4: Putting Good Soil
Now that you have removed all of the bad dirt, it is time for you to put the good soil in! By putting in the good soil, you are ensuring that your plants will grow in a healthy environment with a strong foundation. The steps to do this are simple.
First, you need to fill up a bucket (or as many as you think you might need) with the good soil.
Then, pour the good soil around the desired area of your garden. When you do this, make sure that you cover all parts of the area as equally as possible.
Step 5: Planting the Seeds
After you have put in the good soil, plant those seeds! This step simply requires the seeds that you wish to grow and hands that are willing to get a little dirty (unless you're wearing gardening gloves).
The first step to planting seeds is to find an empty area in the soil that is not too close to other plants.
Once you find this perfect spot, place your finger about an inch (or whatever is suggested on the seed packet) deep into the soil. After you do this, place your seed into the hole you have formed.
Next, cover the seed with dirt and pat it into place.
You can leave a little landmark in the spot to remind you later on where you planted the seed, but it is optional.
Step 6: Mulch Time!
It is now time to mulch your garden! Mulching will help keep the soil moist and plant-friendly. It will go on top of your good soil.
In order to mulch, you must first...open the bag!
After you do this, grab a cup or any object that can help you transport the mulch to your garden.
Then, distribute the mulch evenly throughout your garden. Make sure to cover all areas.
Step 7: Conclusion: How to Maintain Your Beautiful Garden
You are finally here! You have finally created your very own garden. I am pretty sure that it turned out beautiful. It may look pretty now, but if you do not take the time to consistently care for your plants and overall garden, the beauty will likely disappear.
The first thing you must do is water your plants every other day or every few days, except on days when it rains.
Be sure to check up on your seedlings often to see if your plants are growing.
If you see any weeds popping up near your plants or just around your garden, it is highly recommended that you pluck them out.
As long as you follow these steps, your garden will remain in its lovely state for a long time. Good luck with your garden and I hope this Instructable helped!