Friday, December 27, 2019

New Year's Resolutions for Gardeners

Thank you to all of our customers, and all of the people who worked at Valley View Farms, for a successful and memorable 2019.
 The New Year is upon us and gardeners are busy plying through stacks of seed catalogs that have already arrived. We have a little time to sit and think about our gardens too. What should we resolve to do this year? Here is a suggested list garnered from friends and coworkers for 2020.

  • Visit Longwood Gardens. They're open all year, and, while spring and Christmas are the favorite times to visit, the quiet of winter in the gardens and in the conservatory allow us to slow down and look closely at individual plants and displays. Its the perfect stress reliever. 
  • Buy seeds for heirloom plants. 
  • Ask parents and grandparents what they planted in the garden. 
  • Visit your favorite garden center before the spring rush. 
  • Learn. Take in some seminars. Look for them here, Ladew Gardens, local Master Garden classes, Longwood Gardens, Cylburn Arboretum, and Horticulture Society of Maryland.
  • Invite a garden speaker to lunch at your business. 
  • Start a gardening journal. 
  • Join (or start) a garden club.  Reach out to Federated Garden Club of Maryland for clubs in your area. 
  • Add a compost bin to collect kitchen scraps to add to an outdoor compost pile later.
  • Exercise. Getting ready now will make gardening more enjoyable.

  • Plant one native plant. The National Wildlife Federation has a downloadable list for our region. 
  • Design and plant a container garden for vegetables. 
  • Buy one good pair of pruners and/or loppers. 
  • Plant blueberries for the fruit and fall color.
  • Have extra space? Plant perennial edibles like asparagus, horseradish, and rhubarb.
  • Try summer bulbs, like dahlias, gladiolus, and calla lilies.
  • Plant disease-resistant Beacon Impatiens and Imara impatiens in shady areas.
  • Try organic weed controls in the lawn and garden. 
  • Plant milkweed and other butterfly-attracting plants.
  • Plant some flowers for cutting. 
  • Get the GrowIt! app for sharing plant information on social media.

  • Install a rain barrel or two.
  • Water vegetable beds with drip irrigation.
  • Take some photos of your garden and those of your friends.
  • Try organic weed control in the lawn and garden.
  • Have a picnic out near your garden...vow to eat outside once a week. 
  • Manage the garden with a walk around it before or after work each day.
  • Cut flowers and put some in a vase.
  • Throw a garden party!
  • Plant some annuals for late summer and fall color.
  • Plant cool-weather vegetables in late summer for fall harvest. 

  • Seed and feed the lawn. The combination of warm soil temperatures and cool air temperatures make fall the perfect time to work on the lawn.
  • Compost the leaves or use the mower to shred them and leave them on the lawn. 
  • Plant trees and shrubs now. Consider plants to attract birds and other wildlife. 
  • Wait until the first frost, then plant bulbs like daffodils, hyacinths, alliums, frittalarias, and others that are deer resistant. 
  • Get the soil tested for pH (free at our store).
  • Put away shovels and other tools after cleaning them.
  • Evaluate your garden to see where improvements may be made. 
  • Rework the container plants with mums, pansies, ornamental cabbage and kale for fall color.
  • Add a birdfeeder to the garden.
  • Collect seed from flowers and vegetables for next year's garden. 
Okay, those are some resolutions for this year. We also resolve to have the best plants, from the best growers, with the best information available, for all of our customers. 
We at Valley View Farms wish everyone a Happy New Year. Thank you for allowing us to provide the products and advice to make gardening fun!

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