How to Build a Gorgeous Flower Bed in 5 Simple Steps

Creating a gorgeous flower bed doesn’t have to be difficult if you use an easy formula for plant selection and follow these simple steps.

Location

If you’re starting a new flower bed, chances are you have a location in mind already. If not, spend some time exploring your yard and follow the sunlight patterns to find the best spot.

Once you have the location selected, you’ll need to experiment with the shape and size using a garden hose. Thanks to the flexibility of a garden hose, you can easily form the bed outline, step back to see if it will work, and change it if needed.

If the location you selected is next to your home, consider adding 1.5 to 2 feet of river rock between your home and the flower bed. This will allow you easier access to garden and prune your plants later and deter insects, like termites, from entering your home.

Preparation

If there’s existing turf where you want to place the new flower bed, you can use a sharp shooter shovel to remove the grass for easier maintenance later.

Or, you may choose to layer a few inches of newspaper as a barrier that will decompose over time and help destroy the grass and any other weeds underneath. Be sure to first mow this area as low as possible, then wet the newspaper well.

Build

Next, purchase bags of high-quality garden soil and compost or have a load delivered to your home. Mound the soil and compost combination about 6 to 8 inches deep across the entire flower bed you’ve created, making it higher in the top and middle so that it slopes down toward the edges.

Decorative Edge

Now you can line your new flower bed with moss stone, river rocks, brick, or any other type of edging material that suits your preferences.

Plant Selection

Finally, it’s time for plant selection! It’s a good thing you were already paying attention to the sunlight pattern while choosing the location of your new flower bed, because that information will come in handy when selecting plants too. While shopping, be sure to note the full growth potential of any plants you select to allow plenty of room in your flower bed.

When considering various flowers and plants, you’ll need to start with some foundation shrubs or trees. Then, follow this formula to fill out the rest of the bed: thrillers, fillers, spillers.

  • The thrillers will go in back and should be your tallest and showiest flowers.
  • Then, choose some fillers that will add bright, fun colors to your bed, but grow shorter than your thrillers.
  • And finally, choose spillers (or plants that mound or stay small) to go in the front along the edge of your new flower bed.

While choosing your thrillers, spillers, and fillers, think about the color of your home and what might complement your exterior best. If you have a light brick or paint, consider dark vibrant flowers that will bring contrast to your landscape. If you have a dark exterior, perhaps try pastels or even white flowers to pop and create instant curb appeal.

As you plant your selections, you can add humates or mycorrhizal fungi in each hole you dig to give your new flower bed a jump start. If you prefer, you can also add 3 to 4 inches of mulch on top.

For more information about how to build a new flower bed or choosing plants, stop by the Garden Center or call 281-354-6111 to visit with our expert staff. We’ll get you growing!

Organics Work

Humates are now widely considered by horticultural professionals as the single best product you can use for sustainable gardening. What are humates and why should you give organics a try?

First, what are humates?

Humates are natural substances formed over thousands, or even millions, of years that create organic matter composed of several forms of carbon. Humification is the decomposition and breakdown of animal and plant life, resulting in a combination of organic acids, amino sugars, and peptides.

How humates work.

The very complex nature of humates contains a variety of concentrated nutrients. As a result, these compounds encourage plant development and growth. 

Humates promote stronger root systems and resistance to disease, fungal infections, and drought.  In fact, humates increase the oxygen level in soil, which encourages micro-organism activity that provides aeration and better absorption by the plant roots. Of course, we know that oxygen is produced by plants during photosynthesis – but roots also require oxygen to survive.

“When it’s harder for plants to breath, all their energy is put into survival instead of flourishing.”

Humates in action.

Based on all the benefits, humates are a great choice for all plants! But, we’ll focus on reviving our lawns using humates and organic material. As plants and grass return from winter dormancy, homeowners are starting to see the residual effects of Hurricane Harvey and the back-to-back freezes we had this winter.

The cumulative damage from those combined events has wreaked havoc on our landscapes. Even if your yard didn’t flood during the hurricane, our area received an unprecedented amount of rainfall that overwhelmed plant life.

Now, you might be wondering if you have Take All, Brown Patch, or some other fungal disease plaguing your yard. If you’re seeing irregular growth patterns in which some areas of your lawn appear healthy and other sections of grass are brown, you should address the issue now. As we start seeing warmer temperatures in the area, there’s potential for further lawn damage if it’s ignored.

But, there’s good news! Applying humates to your lawn will address any fungal lawn disease you may have as we enter the spring season.  And, as an added bonus, you’ll likely see fewer weeds in your yard this summer too.

Applying humates.

First, start by raking your lawn thoroughly. Then, you can place humates in a granular spreader to disperse across your lawn. You’ll want to reapply humates often, perhaps twice a year or even every other month if you wish.  

Why give organics a try?

The truth is, using organics in lawn care and gardening is an ongoing labor of love. It takes time for microbes to break down, but most people want rapid results. Chemicals and fertilizers may be beneficial used on a specific schedule at certain times, but an ongoing organics system will provide the most long-lasting and dependable results.

Luckily, the horticultural experts at Warren’s can help you every step of the way to select the right organic products for your needs and implement an organics regimen.

The Garden Center currently features several products with humates. Check out MicroLife Humates Plus or Stimulate from Soil Mender with humates and dry molasses.

Keep in mind, we want you to succeed! Most of all, we want your gardening efforts to be worthwhile! And, our experts know that using organics regularly will get you there. Stop by the Garden Center or give our staff a call 281-354-6111 to learn more.

Bougainvilleas

The bou∙gain∙vil∙lea is in the family of ornamental woody shrubs and vines, producing sensational brightly colored purple, red, and pink bracts that surround small flowers. Find out how to incorporate these showstoppers into your landscape.

Train this plant in a small convenient container or as a substantial tree, grow it vertically on a wall or trellis with graceful arches, or as a hedge, bush, or bonsai. The bougainvillea’s versatility is endless!

Bougainvilleas were discovered in the 1700’s along the coast of Brazil, so they work wonderfully in warm climates. What is tropical in the middle of summer if not Houston? Get the most out of these impressive bloomers with these quick tips.

  1. How to plant.

    Bougainvillea thrives when its root system is crowded. For that reason, they work great in containers! But you can plant them in the ground as well. The size of your bougainvillea is only limited by the size of the container you select and your pruning preferences. They can even be grown in hanging baskets!

  1. Soil.

    Be sure to use a high-quality potting soil mixed with compost and make sure your containers have plenty of holes to drain well.

  1. Sun and more sun.

    It’s no surprise these plants love the sun since they originate from a tropical environment. They will perform best in an area that receives as much sunlight each day as possible.

  1. Water.

    Bougainvilleas are not only drought-tolerant, but prefer to have dry soil in between waterings. You can soak the plant thoroughly each time you water, but wait until the soil is completely dry before watering again and make sure the containers are draining well.

  1. Fertilizer.

    NutriStar for Bougainvilleas is ideal to promote heavy flowering and durability. You’ll want to apply the NutriStar Bougainvillea Food every two weeks or so during spring and then monthly in summer.

  1. Cutting back.

    You can deadhead the spent blooms during growing season to encourage regrowth. Or, cut back your bougainvillea more significantly for added blooms.

  1. Cold-weather care.

    Protect your bougainvillas from freezing temperatures by bringing them into the garage. In temperatures below 40 degrees, the bracts and leaves may wilt. Be sure to water those planted in the ground thoroughly before a freeze, and place frost cloth or a similar covering over them for added protection.

Stop by to see the beautiful selection of bougainvilleas we have in stock at the Garden Center. And don’t forget to pick up a high-quality soil and NutriStar Bougainvillea Food!

Pruning Crape Myrtles

Light pruning of Crape Myrtles is recommended this time of year, as with other trees. Too often though, Crape Myrtles are drastically cut back, which is strongly discouraged by most horticultural professionals. Find out how to avoid the dreaded ‘Crape Murder’ as it’s now known.
[Read more…]

Prepping for Spring

You may be wondering what you can do out in the yard this weekend and in the coming weeks to prepare for adding new spring color and plants around your home.

Check out Warren’s tips to prepare the soil in your flower beds, tidy up your edging, and get your yard ready to flourish this spring!
[Read more…]

A Rose is a Rose?

We just received a wonderful stock of antique, Knock Out, and Drift roses at the Garden Center! Wait a minute. A rose is a rose, right?

Actually, there are more than 150 species of roses! And the number of garden hybrids is in the thousands. To help you understand the difference between all the rose varieties, we have a quick breakdown.
[Read more…]

Benefits of Water Features

Studies show the sound of water reduces stress and creates a relaxing environment. Aside from the health benefits, there are other advantages to adding water features in your home landscape.   Water features add sound, texture, and movement to landscape design. They are certainly attractive additions and create instant tranquility, but they’re also functional.

 

[Read more…]

Patio Pizazz

How do you add some Pizazz to your patio?  Do you want your patio to be a great place to be?  Do you want it to bring a smile to your face?  Do you want to enjoy yourself when you’re outside?  Do you want a place to cook or eat? Do you want to feel like you are on vacation when you are there?  Do you want it to be your place to relax and recharge?  If these are things you want from your patio, then read along.  Then take your patio from ordinary to extraordinary.

[Read more…]

Just Add Water

Are you thinking of adding a water feature to your yard?  You need to consider a few things.  Do I want it to be the main feature in my yard?  What size do I want it to be?  How much time do I want to dedicate to taking care of it?   Do I want it to be very elaborate?  Do I want it to be simple?  Do I want to have fish?  What style do I want?  How will it function in my yard?  I could ask additional questions but I think you get the idea.  There are so many styles and design choices out there where do you get started?

[Read more…]

Theme Thyme

What is the theme for your yard?  Do you love the color yellow?  Do you love herbs?  Do you love vegetables?   Do you love bright bold colors?  Do you love white?  Do you want to sit in the garden and read? Do you want to lay in a hammock and relax?  Do you want to grill and grow your own food?  Do you want to see birds and wildlife?  Do you want to hear the relaxing sounds of water trickling?  The questions are endless when planning a theme for your garden.  Let’s discuss some of them.  I’ll help you learn how to pick the perfect theme for your yard.

[Read more…]

X