Prepare your garden space properly before planting

One of the hardest things to tell clients and potential clients who want to spend money of landscaping is that they’re not ready for landscaping. They’ve decided to invest in landscaping and I’m there to tell them no. There’s a reason to my madness. Gardens and landscaping is either moving forwards or it’s moving backwards. It’s never easy to clear a garden of weeds but it’s much easier to remove weeds before it’s actually a garden. Once a garden is filled with plants, removing weeds is a time consuming activity. Before planting a garden or installing a landscape, it’s important to limit weed pressure as best one can. That takes time. The worst thing someone can do is to plant a garden into an existing problem area. As if the new plants will magically make an existing problem go away. Although some will plant a garden into any existing conditions, we like to give a new garden the best chance possible of success. Taking your time to remove weed pressure over the coming months or even an entire garden season will minimize tedious maintenance down the road. Below is a Deutzia that was planted into a problem area. We were called in to this garden for garden maintenance. We spent a couple of hours pulling weeds out of a group of shrubs just like this. It can’t be avoided. The weed problem will only get worse over the years. Left alone, the planting will eventually fail. When I use the term fail, I don’t mean the plants will die, although they could with the right weed, but there comes a point where it doesn’t make sense to spend labor trying to reduce the weed problem. It’s more cost effective to pull the plants and just start from scratch. Before creating a new garden, take your time and prepare a site properly, giving your new plants a competition free garden area to succeed in.

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Richard Schipul
Richard Schipul

For the last 30 years, I have owned the landscape company Designing Eden LLC based in New Milford, CT. We offer landscape designs, landscape installations and garden maintenance services in Fairfield and Litchfield County Connecticut. I am currently the only Nationally Certified Landscape Designer in Litchfield County and sit on the board of the Association of Professional Landscape Designers and Mad Gardeners.


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