Looking for a guide on “how to start a flower garden for beginners”?
You are at the right place!
We all want a beautiful garden and expect gorgeous flowers to add bright colors and pleasant fragrances to your yard.
It’s high time to know the proven steps and get it done.
While gardening is somehow challenging, our step-by-step guide below will help you find it a rewarding one.
Related posts on types of flowers to grow:
- 34 Amazing Yellow Perennials for a More Beautiful Garden
- 30 Attractive Small Purple Perennial Flowers For Your Garden
- 20 Perennials For Shade That Bloom All Summer
- 17 Gorgeous Flowering Vines That Grow in Shady Gardens
Table of Contents
- 1 How to Start a Flower Garden for Beginners: Step By Step Guide
- 2 Step 1: Know Your Garden
- 3 Step 2: Choose The Correct Location
- 4 Step 3: Know Your Plants and Flowers
- 5 Step 4: Invest In Must-Have Garden Tools
- 6 Step 5: Choose The Right Seeds Or Transplants
- 7 Step 6: Keep It Up
- 8 Step 7: Enjoy Your Full Harvest
- 9 Conclusion
How to Start a Flower Garden for Beginners: Step By Step Guide
Step 1: Know Your Garden
Start by knowing your garden well to pick the right plant varieties and prepare the bed properly.
Remove The Grass
It is essential to clear the sod to provide your flowers with enough room for growing and flourishing.
Dig these ongoing enemies out by using a garden trowel, shovel, or hand fork.
Get it under the stubborn grass and its roots, then pull out the top grass layer.
Put newspapers all over the ground (no less than five layers in thickness).
And on the newspapers’ top, layout a 3-inch thick covering (or thicker) of potting soil well mixed with compost and topsoil.
Leave this layer on the surface for approximately four months, which is long enough for the sod to die off and the newspaper to turn into part of your soil.
Practice this process from one year to another to avoid new grass growing.
Till The Garden
First, make the soil loose and crumbly for a more productive garden.
There is no better way than tilling it up.
But how to do it? Follow these simple tips below:
- Mark out each corner of the spot where you want to till the soil with wood stakes. To mark the garden edges, you can either tie a string between the stakes or sprinkle powdered limestone.
- Use a tiller or a pitch fork and start tilling at one end of the marked out garden plot. Like the way you mow the lawn, go across your garden one row at a time.
- No need to rush. Gradually make your own rows.
- Remove all of the grass roots in the garden patch by digging up visible weeds as well as use a rake to break up any clods. Remove any rocks spotted from this area.
- Excessive tilling can make your soil more compact rather than breaking it up.
So, till the soil in each row one time instead of going back over a row.
- To test how perfect your soil is to till, squeeze a handful of it. If it is too wet that a clump is formed, it cannot work well. Meanwhile, go with the soil that crumbles when being squeezed, then you will not have to worry about dealing with hard chunks of soil.
- Based on the testing results of the soil quality, add the right amendments. Till the soil one more time to work all the necessary materials into it.
Enrich Your Soil
Since not all garden soil is perfect for growing plants and flowers, you need to make yours more fertile.
The easiest way is to add sources of organic matter.
Organic materials such as compost with a topping layer of sphagnum peat moss, shredded leaves, or mulch roughly 6 inches or so.
Make sure you lay down a weed barrier before putting on any mulch to prevent weeds from growing through the mulch.
Most amendments can work. Gardeners can even take advantage of leaf mold, humus, or old manure.
If you find it hard to dig into your soil, leave the organic material to settle into the soil.
The organic materials will provide vital nutrients on top, and after one month or two, they will slowly become part of your soil.
Create Your Own Raised Beds
Each type of soil requires special treatment.
While everyone loves fertile and friable soil, even the most experienced gardeners find it hard to work with the soil that is particularly rocky or sandy or that with such a high clay content.
If you find yourself in this situation, creating a raised bed or a garden box is not a bad idea.
Not only does it keep the pathway wide from the soil, but it also prevents compaction and ensures good drainage.
To create your own raised gardens, you can purchase a nearby gardening store kit and fill it with potting mix.
On filling your garden beds, it’s advisable to mix in some granular fertilizer, which can slowly get your plants and flowers off to a good start but offer the advantage of longevity.
You can broadcast it either by hand or using a spreader onto the target plants’ soil surface for the first time applying season’s fertilizer.
Spreading fertilizer by hand only works when you have a small garden.
If you expect a consistent uniform spread on a garden over one hundred square feet, it’s better to purchase a broadcast spreader.
Step 2: Choose The Correct Location
Familiarizing yourself with the area you want to plant is the first and most crucial step in creating your picture-perfect flower garden.
As each location has different topography and light and moisture conditions, how much sun and shade your area gets is essential to consider when picking what types of plants to grow.
If you decide to grow plants or flowers under a pine tree, make sure the flower can survive under the acidic conditions under the pine tree.
Almost all kinds of vegetables and flowers need a daily total sunlight dose from 6 to 8 hours for ultimate plant health and productivity.
So spend one day outdoors observing your garden to determine which location receives full or partial shade versus full sun.
If your yard is pretty shady, don’t despair. All you need to do is to pick shade-tolerant varieties which can bring it to life.
Meanwhile, sunny borders are the best spots for flowers that thrive in direct sun and drought-like conditions.
For example, blanket flowers, black-eyed Susan, dianthus, moss rose, petunia, marigold, and purple coneflower should not be grown in the shade.
Still, many other plants like coral bells,dead-nettles, or lady’s mantle appreciate it.
To know how much sunlight your plant requires, check the tag or ask for any staff at a local garden center.
Step 3: Know Your Plants and Flowers
It can be a bit of a struggle to keep plants and flowers alive on your property.
However, as long as you can identify the plants that can grow well in your soil, you can keep your yard flourish and healthy all year round.
When properly planted, annuals such as sweet alyssum, sunflowers, zinnias, marigolds, and cosmos flowers are easy to plant and grow from seeds.
You can make sure you have good seed starting soil to provide you with better success in starting a flower garden.
Another joy to grow is perennials that need little care, dependably bloom in any soil varieties, and return every year.
Start your project with only one kind or two and get them growing!
Other questions to look up when choosing what to grow in your garden are:
- How much water do these plants need?
- Are there any sorts of plant food or fertilizers that they want?
- How frequently should you prune and trim them?
- Are they poisonous or edible to you, your kids,and your pets?
- How far apart should they be from each other?
If you want to add structure and height to the landscape, use annuals and ornamental grasses like
- Golden Butterfly,
- Deep Purple Salvia,
- Vanilla Butterfly,
- Fireworks Pennisetum,
- Heliopsis and Helianthus varieties,
- Thalictrum rochebrunianum,
- Muhly grass,
- Balloon Flower,
- Black-eyed Susan,
- Coneflower, or
- Cranesbill geraniums.
Step 4: Invest In Must-Have Garden Tools
Regardless of your garden’s size, the right tools make working in your garden a lot easier.
The list of basic garden tools, equipment, and essentials should comprise of:
- Hand fork/digging fork
- Hand trowel
- Hand pruner
- Garden hoe
- Scuffle hoe
- Dirt rake
- Leaf rake
- Garden shears
- Long-handled pruners
- Garden Shovel or D handle Shovel
- Outdoor watering cans
- Garden trug
- Bulb and Bedding Plant Auger
- Hand tools
- Plant dividing tools
Step 5: Choose The Right Seeds Or Transplants
Gardeners, regardless of their experience, prefer a good combination of seeds and transplants.
While the former is perfect for some veggies, the latter ensures more control and predictable results, is the best choice for other varieties.
Seeds are fully packed with almost everything needed to germinate and fully thrive for a delicate root system quickly.
All you need to do is give them a favorable spot with the right amount of sunlight and heat and provide them with enough moisture.
But as we might all know, those seeds have to struggle with weed pressure and any weather hazards such as high wind, frost and high temperature, flood, storm, and drought.
Transplants and starts are essentially baby vegetable plants, which can mature quicker and promise an earlier harvest, thus giving you a way huger jump start on the season.
Transplants are often available in packs of 4 or 6 or pots.
Tip: During their last week indoors, withhold moisture and fertilizer less frequently to condition your transplants to life outdoors.
Though much of your own decision about transplanting versus direct sowing comes down to your personal preference, there are:
Some plants that prefer starting, developing, and finishing in the same place include Sweet Alyssum, Bachelor’s Button, Blue Woodruff, California Poppy (Eschscholzia), candytuft, and sweet peas, Satin flower, Californian Poppy, and Hardy Geranium.
And some varieties that want to start in pots or containers and finish in an outdoor area like daylilies, chrysanthemums, asters, lavender, rosemary, candytuft, euonymus, hostas, balloon flowers, oriental poppies, and butterfly weed.
How To Transplant Your Flowers?
- Using a sharp spade or shovel to remove your flowers from their pot. Try not to break the stems.
- Inspect their roots. Discard any broken or diseased pieces and keep the plants’ healthiest parts only. And never leave them exposed to wind, heat, or sun.
- Locate them in a pre-prepared hole. Only when the soil is sandy or loose should the plants sit a little bit higher. Otherwise, they should sit at the soil level. Before placing the transplant into the hole, make sure to water it well.
- Lightly firm the soil around the transplant with your hands.
- Once again, slowly yet deeply water the transplant so that it can settle in. Ideally, the entire root mass of the new transplant is thoroughly soaked but there is no or just a little water in the hole.
Step 6: Keep It Up
Help your lovely flower garden reach its fullest potential by practicing all the essential garden chores.
Water your flowers. Feed the soil with some time-release fertilizer. Pull weeds and remove diseased, dying, and dead vegetation.
Step 7: Enjoy Your Full Harvest
As crops mature, it’s high time to enjoy the fruits of your labor!
It’s better to understand the specific details and requirements of every single flower species and variety.
Whether 100 percent, 75 percent or 50 percent open blooms, your flowers should be harvested at their peak and desired maturity.
You can harvest the cut flowers either in the early morning (from 5:30 to 8:30 am) when the dew has just dried off or in the evening when the heat of the day cannot make your flowers stressed.
Grade and bunch your properly conditioned cut flowers right after harvesting and before storing them in water.
There is enormous satisfaction in getting your hands a little dirty.
However, before you start buying a cart full of garden tools and plants, take some time to review the steps so that you can start your flower garden properly.
Carol is an avid gardener. She enjoys spending her spare time tending to her backyard vegetable garden and growing flowers in her landscaping. She also has kept up a relaxing indoor garden. She has studied agricultural farming in urban settings and hopes that everyone can start a garden your their home.