What a year it’s been! We’ve been so grateful over the past year for all the amazing developments in our lives. The Bulb Shoppe is closed for the Winter and will re-open on February 1st. We have added a new greenhouse to it for our visitors in Gloucester to enjoy!, We worked hard to prepare our spring catalogue inventory to ship nationwide starting in March. And, of course, that’s all on top of the busy holiday season! But 2019 was a great year!
With 2019 now in the rear-view, we’re finally ready to get into a fresh mindset for a brand new decade. A landmark year is upon us, and that calls for hitting the “reset” button on some of the habits best left in 2019. It’s also a great time to adopt new practices that make for a more sustainable home and garden. Are you up to the challenge? Here are our top ten New Year’s resolutions for gardeners in 2020.
10. Give Your Tools Some TLC
If you’ve been guilty of tossing dirty tools in your shed and hoping for the best, perhaps this is the year to try a different approach! Take a weekend afternoon to declutter your garage or shed and clear out garden tools and supplies that are no longer serving you. Tools that are still in good shape deserve a thorough cleaning. Finally, sharpen the blades on your loppers, garden knife, and lawnmower—it makes such a difference during the season!
9. Plant Out of Your Comfort Zone
It’s easy for many gardeners to fall into the habit of sticking to the same annuals and hanging baskets, and there’s nothing wrong with that. But you have to admit, it’s more fun to experiment with new things and discover plants you’ve never grown before. Why not try a new bulb that you’ve never seen in person before? Or perhaps you could grow a vegetable you’ve never eaten? Doing something totally out of the ordinary can help you re-discover your enthusiasm for gardening.
8. Visit a Community Garden
Community gardens are fabulous places to get some inspiration. Better yet, bringing a child or grandchild can turn it into an educational or bonding experience. Embark on a garden trek, walk slowly, and pay attention to beautiful arrangements and interesting plants. Point out interesting things you see and chat about them with your young companion. From our experiences offering tours through our educational gardens, we can tell you with confidence that small kids love these trips!
7. Use a Garden Journal
If you haven’t used a garden journal yet, it more than likely sounds like work. However, we’ve found it does just the opposite! Try keeping a journal to sketch out garden layout plans and keep track of seeds, water, feedings, and even daily changes. These notes make it easier to keep your tasks organized and help you become a more efficient grower. Plus, you’ll be able to look back at your notes next year, tweak your tactics, and compare your results!
6. Try Native Plants
Native plants tend to get passed over in favor of colorful “designer” annuals. It’s a shame because native plants are just as beautiful and far more beneficial for pollinators! Better yet, native plants tend to be happier and can be lower maintenance!
5. Start Composting
Starting a compost bin is one of the best ways to live greener! Composting reduces household waste and has awesome benefits for your garden. If you’re worried about the extra work, composting is not nearly as much work as you might think. We dare you to try it for just two months—by then, the habits should stick!
4. Watch Your Water Consumption
Water consumption is a growing concern around the world, and fortunately, there are lots of ways to become more water-conscious in your garden. Try using a rain barrel or incorporating more native plants into your borders, beds, and containers. Or you could try a smart irrigation system. But beware! “Mind-less” irrigating can be worse for your gardens as they get watered even when they don’t need it. This could cause rot and spread mold and fungus. Using mulch is a cheap and easy way to conserve moisture in the soil, thereby reducing your watering frequency.
3. Make Some Feathered Friends
If you’ve not yet discovered the joy of birding, it’s worth making a few changes this year to attract more birds to your garden. Bird feeders are inexpensive and allow you to attract a whole range of local species. Providing a source of water, like a birdbath, will make your yard the talk of the flock. If you’ve used a fresh-cut Christmas tree this year, you can stand it up in your backyard near a feeder to offer local birds some extra shelter from the cold. Once you’ve added some bird-friendly features to your yard, all that’s left to do is sit back, wait, and see who shows up!
2. Plant Some Trees
Trees add property value to the home, shelter for wildlife, and plenty of ornamental value. If you’ve got some wide-open spaces in your yard that seem a little empty, resolve to plant at least one tree this year! If you have limited space, a potted tree will make an enormous difference in your garden’s ambiance while providing all the joy and benefits of a planted tree.
1. Relax and Enjoy!
Finally, make some time to take in your garden! Life moves fast, and even if we take the time to tend to our gardens, we don’t always take enough time to enjoy them. If you make no other New Year’s resolutions on this list, resolve to make time at least once per week to sit outside, clear your mind, and enjoy the fruits of your labor. It’s good for your mental health, and you’ll be able to feel the rewards of your work.
We hope these resolutions help you to fall even more in love with your garden this year. Cheers to a new decade filled with bright flowers and brighter smiles!
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