Many times when you move into a new home, the garden is on its last legs or has died completely. Maybe the last owners never maintained it, maybe the property was vacant for too long. Whatever the reason for it being dead there is always a solution. Here are some tips on why the garden is dead and how to revitalize it.
Plants Die Naturally
This particularly pertains to a vegetable garden. Vegetables have a life cycle that includes reaching maturity, producing seeds, and then dying. Some plants are also seasonal with the stocks dying in the winter months only to blossom again in the spring.
Not Enough Water
When you move into a new house and all the plants are dead or dying in the garden, it could very well be that more water is needed. Wilting leaves signal that the plant is in need of water. Observe the soil near the plant. Does it crumble when touched? Is it sopping wet? Can you form it into a ball? If it is sopping wet or crumbles, it is either too wet or too dry. Neither one is good. You want the soil to be damp, not dripping water.
There are many plants and vegetables that are prone to getting pests. Squash and tomato plants attract worms and aphids that can devour leaves and stocks and eventually kill the plants. Checking your garden and plants every couple of days for insects is a good habit to get into. You may want to spray your garden with a safe, organic insecticide as well. Spray the insecticide weekly to keep pests at bay. Be sure not to spray when the sun is at its hottest. Also, remove infected and diseased plants and leaves to help keep the garden as a whole healthier. Planting pest and disease resistant plants is another option to save time.
Too Little Nutrients
Gardens that have a lack of nutrients in the soil often have plants with brown patches and yellowing leaves. If your garden is dead, you will have to mix in fresh nutrients in the form of fertilizer into the soil. Using an organic fertilizer yields the best results. If you do not have access to organic fertilizer, such as manure, you can use artificial powdered fertilizers. Be sure to mix in the correct amount to avoid oversaturating the soil.
Diagnose The Problem
Before going crazy and performing all the steps above, diagnose why the garden has died. It could be one thing or many. As soon as you diagnosed the problem, pull out the dead or undesirable plants and groom soil. Avoid buying or renting a rototiller as they can compact soil and cause more weeds to sprout. It’s best to fertilize and prepare the garden by hand. When your soil is fertilized, decide when and how deep to plant your garden and the arrangements. Following these steps will allow for a rejuvenated, healthy garden.