Bedding plants are a great way to add color and texture to your garden. They’re often less expensive than bulbs, they last longer and they don’t require as much maintenance. Still, it’s important that you take steps to ensure that they live up to their full potential. In this blog post, I’ll explain how you can grow beautiful bedding plants all season long—and beyond.
Plan your bed.
How to plant a bed:
- Measure the area you want to plant.
- Consider the size of the plants you want to grow and plan your bed accordingly, in sections based on their needs (e.g., if you’re planting annuals and perennials together, keep them separated so they can each get what they need).
- Seek out inspiration from retail garden centers or online sources so that you can see how other people have planted beds in similar spaces—and then use this advice as reference points when planning your own gardening project!
Compost is organic matter used to improve soil quality. It can be made from leaves, grass clippings, vegetable scraps and other plant matter. Compost can also be used as mulch or fertilizer for your plants.
- Make your own compost pile
- Use a tarp to keep it protected from rain and snow
Choose plants that will complement one another.
When you’re choosing plants for your garden beds, it’s important to think about how they’ll look together. The best way to create a cohesive and pleasing garden bed is to choose plants that complement each other. Some things you might want to consider are:
- The color scheme of the plants
- The timing of when the flowers and foliage appear in your region
- What pollinators you want visiting your garden
If two or more of these features don’t match up well, then it may be wise to weed out one of them before planting anything else.
Plant your bedding plants at the right time of year.
You don’t want to plant your flowers and plants too early, as they could be killed by frost. The same goes for planting them too late, as they won’t have time to grow and bloom before the first frost hits. The best times to plant are between March and June for spring flowers, or September through November for fall flowers. However, you can also choose from a variety of other options that may work better with your climate or local growing conditions:
For Summer Bedding Plants: June (through August)
For Winter Bedding Plants: November (through March)
Keep the soil fresh and moist.
There are many things to consider when choosing the right soil for your plants. The most important thing is that it’s well-drained, but also moist enough to keep the plant from getting too dry. The best way to do this is by keeping your plants in pots with good drainage holes so excess water can drain through.
The next step is making sure that your potting soil has enough organic matter, whether it be compost or peat moss. This helps keep your plant healthy by providing nutrients as well as moisture retention and aeration (allowing oxygen into the root system).
Another thing to look for when buying potting soil is pH balance. Most gardeners prefer neutral potting soils; however if you have acidic or alkaline soil, there are specific products designed just for those types of conditions (check out this article on pH balancing). If you’re unsure how much lime or sulfur it takes to adjust your pH levels correctly, always test before adding any amendments!
Don’t prune or deadhead too much, if you want to encourage seeds to spread to nearby beds.
If you want to encourage seeds to spread to nearby beds, don’t prune or deadhead too much. This can be done by pruning the flower heads off of some plants and leaving them on others. If you have a plant that has both seed heads and flowers, then it may be good to make sure the flower heads are removed so that more attention is paid towards growing new plants from seeds.
On the other hand, if you want your bedding plants to continue producing fruit every year, then it is important to deadhead them when they reach maturity (i.e., before they start producing fruit).
Know how to differentiate between weeds, seedlings and emerging plants.
- When you plant a bed, it is important that you keep the weeds out. There are several ways to do this, but the most effective is to learn how to differentiate between weed seeds and emerging plants.
- Weed seeds are usually small, brown and have a hard shell covering them. They will often fall into your bed when you walk on it or when rain falls on top of it.
- Seedlings are also small but they are green in color with thin stems that need watering daily for them to grow larger. If left unattended for too long without being watered properly, these weeds may die off completely without ever sprouting into full-grown plants like dandelions or daisies (depending on what type of seed was sown).
- Emerging Plants can be recognized by their large size and thick green stalks; however these particular types of plants don’t always appear in beds unless someone has purposefully planted them there themselves using gardening tools such as shovels or spades (which we won’t get into right now).
Taking care of bedding plants is easy if you know what to do.
The plants’ health depends on the soil’s moisture content, so make sure it’s not too dry or too wet. If you can squeeze a handful of dirt and water comes out, your plants are getting enough moisture. If nothing comes out when you squeeze the dirt, there’s not enough water in their environment.
You can also use a soil tester to check if a plant needs more moisture or less by putting the test probe into the ground until it hits solidity (like clumps of peat moss). Then put some water on top of that spot and see how long it takes before there’s an indentation in the dirt again—the bigger this indentation is, the more “permeable” your soil is—and therefore more likely to retain moisture over time.
You might also want to consider adding fertilizer every once in awhile since bedding plants often come from sandy soils where nutrients aren’t particularly abundant; but make sure that whatever fertilizer you choose doesn’t contain any kind of acid (like sulfuric acid).
With a little time and effort, you can create a beautiful bed of plants that will last through the seasons.