1. Ensure That a Plant Is Healthy before Buying
Examining a plant carefully before deciding whether to buy it or not is very important as it will help you buy healthy plants. Keep in mind that a new plant can introduce disease to your garden. However, it is not easy to know what a healthy plant looks like. The good thing is that there are books, magazines, and catalogues that can show you what a healthy plant looks like.
When looking for a plant to buy, avoid those with rotted stems, dead spots o insects. This is because such problems spread very fast to healthy plants. Some of these problems can be hard to get rid of. So avoid them in the first place. Apart from the top of plants, examine the quality of the roots. Even though many customers don’t do this in a garden centre, it is something that they need to do.
To do this, put the stem of the plant between your fingers and place your hand on the soil surface. Next, gently invert the pot and shake the plant loose. You can loosen the roots from the pot by tapping the edge of the pot against a solid surface. Healthy roots are often firm, have a white colour, and are spaced all over the root ball. Avoid plants with dark or mushy roots even if the tops look healthy. Keep in mind that a rotted root system will kill a plant after some time.
2. Use Fully Composted Yard Waste
Materials in a compost pile decompose at different rates and some decompose faster than others. You will find that some of the materials have decomposed sufficiently to be used while others have not yet. Thorough composting generates high temperatures for a long period of time and this kills pathogens that may be in the compost.
Materials that have not gone through this process can reintroduce diseases into your garden as pathogens have not been killed. This often happens especially when the plant debris is infected. Only use a compost pile whose condition you are sure of. Never use yard waste like mulch if you have sensitive plants as they can introduce infected debris into your compost pile.
3. Keep an Eye on Garden Insect Pests
It is very important to keep an eye on garden insect pests. This is because insect damage can cause viruses and bacteria to enter a plant. Apart from that, insects like aphids, leaf-hoppers, and thrips can transport viruses from one plant to another. If you are looking for a gardening company but can’t seem to find the right one, I would highly recommend that you see Pristine Gardens.
Thrips can transport impatiens necrotic spot virus (which has become a major challenge for commercial producers for a decade now) while leafhoppers carry a disease known as Aster Yellows. Insect attacks can put a plant under stress and make it less likely for the plant to fight against diseases.
4. Clean Your Garden In the Fall
Clean out your garden in the fall even if you are a resident of a moderate climate. Apart from being a good way to prevent diseases that affect plants, cleaning your garden in the fall will control diseases already in your garden. The disease can stay on dead leaves and debris over winter and attack the new leaves that emerge in spring.
Some of the diseases that can be reduced by cleaning up your garden in the fall include back spots on roses, Iris leaf spots, and daylily leaf streaks. If you are leaving foliage and stems to create winter interest, remove them before new growth begins in the spring season.