Correct feeding and watering is most important for Successful Container Gardening and thriving plants.
Follow these essential pot gardening tips and enjoy loads of flowers and vigorously growing plants in your container garden.
Did you sometimes wonder about the beautiful flower pots you often see
in gardening magazines and what you did wrong with your pots because
they somehow don't look like the ones in the magazines. Correct feeding
and watering of your planters is the key to healthy plants and lots of
flowers so paying extra attention to this really pays off! In my
experience this is where most things go wrong. Garden containers do need
care and maintenance to produce an abundance of flowers and stay
healthy. Feeding and watering is most important for successful container gardening.
Like all of us plants need nutrients to grow and thrive. Being aware of this fact is important for successful container gardening. Plants in containers have limited rooting space and rely on you to supply them with sufficient nutrients. Not feeding results in poor looking plants that hardly flower and grow and are prone to disease. Fertilizing can be done in several different ways and each method will work equally well if done regularly. Here are my container gardening tips for feeding your plants:
1. Liquid or Powdered Fertilizers
These types of fertilizers have to be diluted and are watered onto the compost. It is important to follow the instructions on the pack. Too much fertilizer can burn the roots and kill your plants! This should be done every 7-14 days during the growing season. The secret to success with feeding plants is little but often!
2. Slow Release Fertilizer
These plant foods are either in loose granules or pressed into tablets. The tablets are easier to use on plants that are potted for a longer time already. They are the right fertilizer for you if you don't like or have the time for the above method. Mix the correct rate into the compost when repotting or planting your containers. These intelligent fertilizers will keep your plants fed for a growing season with very little effort and really make successful container gardening very easy. You can top-dress containers with a mix of fresh potting compost and the slow release fertilizer in the spring and forget about feeding for the rest of the season.
These summer flower containers are potted with slow release fertilizer so all they need is plenty of watering during the summer!
Watering plants seems like an easy task but the reality is that a lot can go wrong with it! Most of the time plants are not watered regularly enough during dry weather. Plants in pots can dry out very quickly particularly if they are exposed to a lot of sun combined with a breeze. If the pot is small in comparison to the foliage that needs to be supported it is very difficult to keep the soil moist enough. These containers might need watering several times a day in hot weather.
A long garden hose can make this job much easier and far less labour intensive than using watering cans particularly if you have a lot of planters that require water.
The best time to water is either morning or evening...but if a plant is
drooping get to it right away! If the soil is very dried out you might
have to stand the pot into a bucket of water until it is well soaked.
Very dried out soil is very hard to re-wet. It shrinks and becomes
nearly water-repellent. If watered just from the top the water will not
penetrate into the soil and just run over it.
Evergreen plants like e.g. box trees might need watering when you least think of it during autumn or winter. These containers are often placed near walls or the house where they might not catch enough rain. Drying cold winds can do additional damage that often goes unnoticed. So don't just forget about your evergreen plants in the winter and check them periodically.
Plants can of course also be over-watered. This happens very often with indoor plants. The easiest way to determine if your pots need watering is to check with your fingers. If the compost feels moist it does not need watering yet.
Seaside Garden Center, Renard Rd, Caherciveen, Co. Kerry, Ireland