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Gardening from the Ground Up

Creating a garden from scratch is not to technical, nor does it cost the earth. It does however take time, patience and a willingness to learn as you go as some plants will die. Gardening is a learning curve - there is no such thing as a garden guru for we are all learning continuously, and yes, we all at some time loose plants.

Whether you live in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide, Darwin, Canberra or Alice Springs, there are some common steps we all need to undertake to achieve a garden from the beginning... from the ground up.

Step 1.

Assess the site: check the soil's pH, nutrition and soil type; research the local climate conditions; identify all the plants already on the property.

Step 2.

What do you want: you need to identify what you want the garden to do. Do you want to create harvestable food, do you want a modern landscape, do you wish to create a permaculture and self-sustainable existance, do you want the garden to feature your love of plant collection.

This will drive your garden in terms of direction, purpose and process.

Step 3.

DIY or DIFM - 'Do It Yourself' versus 'Do It For Me'

While both these have advantages and dissadvantages the most important element here is to ensure you get the final product (ie the garden) the way YOU want it to be. If hiring a garden designer or contractor, ensure they follow your recommendations... not their own.

At this step you need to look at:

  • How to improve soil and actually do it.
  • Where to buy your plant and have them ready for when you need to plant them.
  • Prepare the site for your vegetable patch and  fruit trees before the planting season starts and having the seeds and plants ready to put into the ground.

Step 4.

Monitor and maintain the garden. This will involve replacing deceased plants with better selections, remulching and re-arranging some plants that were put in the wrong position to start with. There will be a need to watch for pests and diseases, fertilise the plants and prune some of the more vigourous plants. Vegetable crops need to be harvested, dug in, replanted or rotated.

Step 5.

Sit back and enjoy... but always remember that a garden looks good as the result of work... ie maintenance. It is imperative to look after it.


A series of e-books will shortly be uploaded for all the major state capital cities - stay tuned for more news soon.

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