Flower beds full of colorful arrangements of annual flowers are the perfect way to grab the attention of guests and add curb appeal to your beautiful home.
Planting flowers may seem overwhelming but I'm here to help you through this. In my opinion the hardest part is deciding on the plant material that you like the best (that will thrive in your region)
Chances are if you are reading this that you love working in your yard and adding that personal touch to your home. So let's dive right in!
Step 1: Decide What Plant Material You Want!
Your decision on plant material is what makes your beds unique. There are many to choose from and no wrong answers when choosing as long as they will thrive in the area that you plan to put them.
The most important thing to consider is whether the plants need full sun or part sun. You also want to pay attention to how much water each plant requires (if planting multiple types of flowers).
If you decide that you want multiple types of flowers, the best advise I can give is "Think Layers". You want to be able to see everything so you want to place the taller varieties in the back and work your way down to the shorter varieties in the front.
These are all things to consider when selecting the plants. Once you know what you want the hard part is over.
Step 2: Prepping the Bed
The first thing you want to do is make sure the area is free of weeds. This is a dreaded task for many but is crucial unless you want a bed that is full of weeds.
Next you will want to cultivate the soil. While cultivating with a tiller do your best to avoid compacting the freshly tilled soil by walking on it.
After cultivating the soil smooth it out with a rake. Try no to walk on the soil while doing this either. (I realize that sometimes there is no way to reach across bigger beds without stepping in them)
Step 3: Adding Fertilizer and Pre Emerge
Fertilizing is an important step because plants need more than just water if you want them to flourish. I use Osmocote Classic 14-14-14 which is a slow release plant food.
Another important step is pre emerging because let's face it, no one really likes to pull weeds. I use Snapshot or the generic for Snapshot which in this case is Quali Pro T/I 2.5G.
To apply the pre emerge you will need a seed spreader like the one in the picture. The pre emerge is in granular form which is almost as fine as sand. Make sure to spread out a thick even coat on top of the soil.
The seed spreader is not required to fertilize but is helpful if you have one. If you don't have a seed spreader you can just sprinkle it throughout the bed by hand.
Step 4: Arranging the Flowers
I recommend laying all of the flowers where you think you might want them before you start planting.
The first reason is so that you can make sure that you have enough plants for the area that you are trying to cover. Sometimes you get to the end and wish you had just a few more plants; but if you lay them out first, you can rearrange to accommodate for the missing plants. (sometimes you just need more plants for the desired look)
The second reason is so that you can adjust your plants to line up better. The flowers should line up in rows but should also line up diagonally... So if you look from the side you should see the rows line up but if you look at the bed from an angle they should line up also.
But in the end there is no wrong way to do it. It's all about personal preference. Have fun and be unique!
Step 5: Time to Put Them in the Ground!
We finally made it! It's time to get these flowers into some dirt.
You should already have your plants arranged so we can jump right in. If you cultivated properly you shouldn't need a small shovel to plant them. You should be able to dig holes easily with your hands. Of course a small shovel is helpful and faster.
When planting make sure that the holes are at the correct depth. They need to be just deep enough for the root ball to be covered. Once you place plants in each hole you want to cover the roots with dirt and press the roots down firmly. Then just smooth the soil out a little bit and move to the next plant.
Step 6: Give Them a Good Soaking
After planting everything you will want to soak everything in really well. If you have an irrigation system or a sprinkler let it run for about an hour if soil is dry. Even if it's not dry I would at least run it for 30 minutes. After all of your hard work it is important to take care of your plants once they are in the ground
Step 7: Enjoy the View
Now you can relax a little bit and enjoy your creation! It's always rewarding to see a flower bed come to life. I receive a lot joy knowing that I created a work of art that is beautiful and unique. I hope you will feel the same way.