Flower gardening can become a passion; it can also be overwhelming. There are millions of plants to choose from and even more ways to combine them. Let's walk through the stages of building your flowering borders from the soil up.
01 of 07
Gardens should start with the soil, but most of us don't have the patience for that. It is essential, though, because that soil is what your flowers need to be health.
Choosing the right location is another key to flower gardens. Most flowers thrive in full to partial sun, and you don't want your garden in a place that impedes other activities in your yard.
If this is your first garden, it's probably best to start small. Taking on a large garden plot can quickly become overwhelming, and it may even turn you off from the idea altogether.
Is space an issue? Anyone can start a container garden on any scale. This is a great option if you live in an apartment or condo where breaking ground is not an option.
Gardening should be fun, so ease into it. As any experienced green thumb will tell you, there's always room for improvement and new ideas.
02 of 07
Many of the most beautiful flowers in the garden are annuals, meaning they need to be planted every year. These include favorites like pansies, petunias, impatiens, and marigolds and they are prized for the brilliant color they add to the landscape.
Some annuals are self-sowing or what gardeners like to call 'volunteers.' Most of the time, these will seed themselves and produce beautiful plants year after year.
Then, there are biennial flowers like foxglove and black-eyed Susans. These plants will have two growing seasons in their lifecycle. After this time, they will seed out so the process can start all over again.
03 of 07
Perennial plants and flowers are what make a garden look better and better with age. Choosing the right plants for your garden and keeping them growing well is what makes perennial gardening such an enjoyable journey for the gardener.
There are always new perennials to try and new techniques to learn. You'll be delighted to know that perennials come back year after year, though some are limited to just a few years.
Even though they come back, you do still need to care for perennial flowers. This includes dividing them and knowing when to cut them back after the growing season. With careful attention, perennials will be a mainstay in your flower beds.
04 of 07
Somehow roses got a bad rap for being difficult to grow. You may never grow an award-winning tea rose, but most roses will thrive in a garden.
Choose varieties that will be happy in your area and give them plenty of sunshine, then sit back and smell the roses.
A few maintenance tips will help you along the way. For instance, knowing how and when to prune roses will keep your plants healthy and happy. You will also want to prepare them for winter properly.
Don't fear roses, embrace them. They're fantastic additions to any garden, and you'll be delighted with every bloom.Continue to 5 of 7 below.
05 of 07
What would spring be without flowering bulbs? Tulips and daffodils are often the first signs of spring, and they're a fantastic motivation for the upcoming season.
06 of 07
It's hard to remember when ornamental grasses weren't a fixture in every garden. Even if you can't tell them apart, you can still appreciate the texture and contrast they bring to a garden. And no plant could be easier to grow.
Ornamental grasses can be great backdrops for your flowers, and they can bring color to the garden throughout the year. They're a great way to extend your garden into the fall when many kinds of grass peak and some even bring you joy well into the winter.
If you don't have space in the garden, containers are always an option.
07 of 07
Few flower gardens are made up of flowers alone. Trees, shrubs, and vines give a garden architecture and bones. Many also flower or add colorful and textured foliage.
Groundcovers are another amazing resource. These can carpet or edge a garden, as well as tease you along a garden path.
It's very easy to combine all these elements to create a mixed border that holds its interest all year long.