In our last blog, we talked about how to plants seeds in your garden and the benefits of growing your own greens from scratch. While that is a very satisfying way to start your veggies but it can get overwhelming for some new gardeners or even sometimes we miss the time frame to start our seeds and sometimes we just missed out on the seeds we get. There can be many reasons for not being able to start your seeds but that doesn’t stop one from growing their greens and flowers.
Whether it is from seeds or directly a plant in your garden from the nursery, a healthy and beautiful garden requires hard work. Not to forget, buying plants can be an expensive affair compared to seeds. So, you will want to be sure that the plants you are investing in are healthy and will give you a healthy blooming garden. To make sure that happens, let’s look at the list of things you need to see in a plant before making the purchase in the nursery and bringing it home.
1.) Take a good look at the overall condition of the plants in the nursery and not just the ones you plan on buying. If the plants look dull and sickly, better to head to the next nursery.
2.) Look closely for any bugs, pests or disease. Sometimes they are hiding on the underside of the leaves. Check closely for any signs in the plant and soil as sometimes you might miss it.
3.) Check for the roots. If you are able to pull the plant out of the container to see, the roots should be light in color and evenly distributed. Don’t go for roots that are dark in color or have scrambled in one place. If you are not able to take the plant out the pot, check the bottom for drainage holes. You will get a good idea looking at roots coming out of the drainage holes. Again, there shouldn’t be too many roots poking out of the holes as well as that shows that the plant growth is getting stunted and it is in stress. A few are ok though.
4.) We all get very excited to pick up the plants that have beautiful flowers blooming all over it but control that urge to pick up the prettiest plant. Instead, go for the ones that are still in the budding stage. Plants that have not bloomed yet establish better in the transplant and thrive.
5.) Look at the main stem/s of the plant. Are they healthy and look full? If the plant is tall and thin, it means that the plant has been stretching for light and has not gotten enough light and nutrients. Instead of growing fuller, it might be looking thin and spindly which is a sign of stress on the plants, leading to lesser blooms or fruit.
6.) Are the leaves looking green, lush and healthy? Look at the ends of the leaves for any browning, wilting or yellow leaves. This may indicate that the plant is either under or overwatered. It is also possible that it has not been given enough nutrition for good growth.
These few tips will help you get through the huge array of plants in the nursery and hopefully to be able to choose the right one. But keep in mind, the job is not done yet. Once you get the plants home, you need to take proper care to transfer them and acclimatize them to the new environment with proper light and water.