If you’re into gardening, you’re probably familiar with the rewarding feeling of having your first crop or blossom. But you also know just how tricky growing plants can be. As a gardener, you’ll fight everything from pests to weather conditions to acidic soil while trying to get your first bumper crop. Even if you’re naturally blessed with a green thumb, you’ve probably worked really hard to get your garden to bloom.
It can also be, well, kind of an expensive endeavor. Gardeners have to buy tools, seeds, fertilizer, pots, weeding supplies, and structural supports. All of that stuff doesn’t come cheap, even if it usually pays off in the long run.
Enter the internet, the wealth of hacks from experts all over the world. They’ve got advice for everything from helping plants thrive to gardening in a thriftier or more eco-friendly way. Whether you’re struggling to keep rabbits out of your lettuce plants or you want to find ways to garden that are good for the planet, you can find everything you need online.
So, you can start right here with these 40 gardening secrets every gardener needs to know. Then grab your spade and some coffee filters and hit up your garden!
1. K-Cups make great seed starters.
2. Milk jugs make perfect watering cans.
3. You can also upcycle egg cartons into seed starters.
4. Use wine bottles to make a self-watering planter.
5. You can also do this with a jug of water and some paper towels.
6. Coffee filters keep soil from seeping out of pots.
7. A shoe rack makes a great vertical herb garden.
8. Plastic forks are a simple way to deter animals in the garden.
9. The top of a milk jug makes a protective “greenhouse” for seedlings.
10. Toilet paper rolls make great biodegradable planters.
11. It’s easier to make a rain barrel than you might think.
12. You can easily redesign your yard after your plants are mature.
13. Use old cans to aerate plant pots.
14. Use a regular wooden board to create even lawn edging.
15. Use PVC pipe to fertilize dense plants.
16. Keep plants ultra-hydrated with kitchen sponges.
17. Make mulching easy by using a small container.
18. Use a plastic clamshell container as a planter.
19. Use a to-go coffee cup as a watering can.
20. Fertilize your garden beds with Epsom salt.
21. Use croquet wickets to keep a hose in place.
22. Use zip ties to secure your climbing plants.
23. Use a tarp as a multipurpose garden tool.
24. Use a mailbox as a gardening tool holder.
25. Use a posthole digger to make vegetable planting easier.
26. Use a knife to avoid yanking your plant roots.
27. Keep your tools in a pot of sand.
28. Use citrus peels for easy planters.
29. Get a five-gallon bucket for all your tools.
30. Use cinnamon to kill diseases in the soil.
31. Coffee grounds help keep pests at bay.
32. And so do eggshells.
33. Kill weeds with vinegar.
34. Use a mounted pallet to hang your gardening tools.
35. Hydrogen peroxide can help protect your seedlings.
36. Honey helps encourage cuttings to thrive.
37. Use cooking water to fertilize your garden bed.
38. Pinch your plants to help them grow.
39. Suffocate weeds with newspaper.
40. You can check your soil pH with regular household items.
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