Mother’s Day, Container Gardening and Weed Suppression…OH MY!

They’re a popular Mother’s Day gift. Brilliant roses, luscious lilacs and colorful hydrangea are quickly snatched up from gardening centers to be lovingly bestowed upon mothers around the country.

Unsightly weeds can ruin the landscape that these plants now call home. Make sure your containers and flower beds are prepared and weed-free before you begin planting.

Use these tips to get the plants into the soil and ensure success!

  1. First, make sure that the weather forecast shows frost-free nights. Cold weather will quickly knock out any thriving flower or plant.
  2. Then, use Sweet Peet to enrich the soil in which you are planting. Our mulch, which is also a great soil amendment, adds nutrients that will continue to leach into the soil when you water the plants or when it rains. Using a mix of two-thirds potting soil to one-third Sweet Peet will do the trick.

Don’t forget about weed suppression. Follow these steps to ensure a weed-free container garden or flower bed.

  • Make sure the beds are free of weeds before starting any project – very important!
  • Use an organic weed preventer.
  • After planting perennials, mulch your beds with 3 to 4 inches of Sweet Peet. This is an important step because the thickness of the mulch is the key to suppressing weeds. If weeds are exposed to sunlight, they’ll grow. But if they can’t get any sunlight, they’ll be smothered.
  • Once Sweet Peet mulch is in place, you can plant annuals directly into Sweet Peet. Doing so will cut down on any damage done to the young, tender plants.
  • Remember, Sweet Peet isn’t a magic cure for weeds. Many weed seeds are carried by the wind or on birds. When they land in the soil, weeds will grow. Keep your eye out for weed growth, and promptly pull them out.
  • Don’t be tempted by the ease of using a weed mat or fabric below the mulch. Turning to these products is actually counter-productive to the benefits that organic mulch offers. If you place a barrier between the mulch and soil, the organic matter in the mulch won’t break down or enrich the soil with its nutrients. Laying down plastic is just as harmful, as it will block air and water and impede growth.

On Mother’s Day, be just as kind to your plants as you are to your mother. Choose organic mulch when planting container gardens, amending soil and mulching beds. Organic mulch will enhance the soil’s biota and microorganisms that are crucial to the health of the flowers and plants. It will also promote weed suppression and ensure a beautiful landscape.

Need advice for container gardening or planting flowers? Talk to your local garden guru and get tips that will result in a garden you can enjoy for the rest of the season.