I don’t claim or pretend to have a green thumb. In fact, its probably any color but green. I can’t seem to keep anything alive for longer than 2-3 months (and that’s long for me). A few months ago, I decided to commit myself to maintaining a tiny little garden at the corner of my house. I wanted to start small since I have such a hard time keeping anything alive. Pretty sad considering a large part of my family’s business is selling live plants.
When we bought the house, the garden came with some cabbage head looking plants in it. I started by ripping those out. It was so gross and infested with snails. Barf. I threw them in the trash and the little snails started climbing up the sides of the trash can and onto the lid.
Hours later…it was dark, but I was done (and sweaty and gross).
The next morning, I went straight to my local home and garden store and picked up a bunch of annuals. I like the idea of being able to switch up the colors every year. Since I already started with yellow mums I planted next to the cabbage head things a few weeks before, I went along with the same color scheme and added some white impatiens. So cute, right?
Two months later…
Dead. All dead except one sad, lonely little clump. I’d heard about warranties on plants and flowers so I called the store. What they said was surprising. They provide a lifetime warranty on all flowers and plants. Which makes NO sense because these are annuals. They’re SUPPOSED to die. All I had to do was dig up the plants and give them my membership number to look up my receipt.
So, I dug up what was left of my pathetic little garden, shoved it in a plastic bag, and brought it in. I wish I took a picture of the pathetic bag of sticks. Amazingly, they just let me pick out new flowers and walk out the door. Honestly, I think they felt sorry for me. Don’t care. Free project, free things. I’m happy.
Time to plant.
Here’s what you’ll need for about 12 square feet of space (I actually did the calculation as 0.25πr2 and rounded. Thanks high school math!):
- 10 6-packs of annuals (fewer if you want a less dense look)
- Gardening Gloves
- Small Shovel
- Optional: Potting Mix
- Optional: Mulch
Since I had done this once before, I already mixed in potting mix to amend the old soil (which basically means to add poop and nutrients to make it less terrible). It was what the garden people suggested. I live in Southern California where the soil is crap. Its basically a hard consistency that breaks up into fine dust. My soil needed all the help it could get. I also laid mulch down and most of it was still left, so I didn’t buy anymore.
To start, I laid out the 6 packs over the space to get a general idea of where I wanted to lay the flowers out in the space.
To start planting, I removed the flowers from the 6-pack tray.
I started by pulling them from the top, but these things are actually pretty fragile, so I started flipping them over and squeezing the bottoms to push them out. Learned this after I broke a few stems trying to pull it out from the top. Oops.
Next, I took my shovel, jammed it into the dirt, and pulled the soil to the side. Then I took one of the little flower pods and put it in the hole, making sure it was deep enough to barely cover all of the little pod.
Next, I filled in the hole with the dirt I originally dug out and gently packed it down. All pretty intuitive. I went through one 6-pack at a time and planted them all in the space.
Thirty minutes later, I was all done!
Here’s all the flowers I picked out for this:
Not pictured/only ones that survived the last planting: mums (the tiny dead looking sticks, but its still slightly green so I left it.)
Crossing my fingers and hoping these survive or there will be another blog update on how I had to replace them again. Can’t lose.