7 common mistakes every gardening beginner makes

Every new gardener makes mistakes, like planting mint and geraniums together in a window box (who knew that mint bullies everything in its path?) or choosing the “perfect” planting spot in early spring, only to see it covered in shade after the trees leaf out.

0:49 Why gardening beginners must avoid planting too much
1:34 Gardening tips on the right planting time & season
2:11 How to prepare the soil for a successful gardening
2:45 How to choose the right spot for planting vegetables
3:32 Gardening tips on the right distance for planting the plants
4:08 How to feed your plants using organic fertilizers
4:45 The greatest mistake gardening beginner must avoid

Don’t be discouraged! You can enjoy growing your own food without getting frustrated. I have compiled a list of 8 common mistakes that new gardeners, and at times even those who have been into gardening for few years also tend to do.

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Moving onto the video,
Mistake Number 1.  Planting too much

After spending the winter creating elaborate gardening Pinterest boards, thumbing through seed catalogs, and dreaming of fresh veggie flavor, it’s easy to overestimate how big your garden should be—and underestimate the time and effort it will take to care for it. Experienced gardeners know that a big garden equals a big commitment, one that’s too much for most new gardeners.

Do this instead: Start small. If you’re a total newbie to gardening, make a list of your five favorite vegetables and herbs. Then take a little time to research their growing needs before you buy them.
Add a few more plants and a bit more growing space each year and before you know it, you’ll have plenty of homegrown produce to share!

Mistake number 2. Planting too soon (or too late).
One of the biggest mistakes new gardeners make can be chalked up to cabin fever. On the first warm day after being cooped up inside all winter, you head straight outside and plant a row of tomatoes…and then nighttime temperatures plummet back below freezing and you lose them all. On the other hand, you don’t want to wait too long to plant, either. Planting when it’s already hot can stress plants and require a lot more effort from you to get them to harvest.

Do this instead: First, find out your region’s estimated first and last frost dates then use those dates as a guide to when to start your garden. After all, who wants to waste time and money planting a garden twice, just because you were teased by a warm, spring-like day? If you’re anxious to get your hands dirty after a long winter, busy yourself building a raised bed, adding garden paths, or improving your garden soil until the danger of frost passes.

Mistake number 3. Planting in just any old soil.
What’s so wrong with digging up some dirt and putting the plants in? Plenty. See, soil provides the foundation for a successful garden, so it needs to be rich and filled with nutrients. Bad soil is like junk food for plants, and they won’t grow and thrive if they’re stuck in it—just like you wouldn’t do well if all you ate were potato chips!

Do this instead: Before planting, improve your in-ground soil with nutrient-rich garden soil which helps protect against both under- and over-watering. If you’re growing in containers, you’ll need a lighter weight soil with excellent drainage.

Mistake number 4.  Planting where there’s not enough sun

You may love tomatoes, but if you don’t have a spot that gets at least 6 to 8 hours of sunlight, you won’t have much luck growing them. It’s a basic—and sometimes frustrating—fact of gardening: You’ll waste time, money, and effort trying to grow sun-loving plants in shady spaces.

Do this instead: If your yard is on the shady side, consider growing sun-loving plants in containers and placing them in whatever sunny patch is available, whether that’s a patio, balcony, or driveway. Just use as many pots as you need to create the garden you want. 

Mistake number 5. Crowding your plants.

As a new gardener, it’s tempting to try to grow lots of plants in your garden to maximize your harvest—and besides, those little plants look so lonely with no friends around them. Here’s the thing, though: Small plants will grow bigger, and as they do, they’re going to need more space. Too many plants crowded in a small area means they’re going to have to compete for water and nutrients, jeopardizing the health of the entire garden. Plus, if there isn’t enough air circulation between plants, any diseases that come along will have an easier time spreading.

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