If you're gardening at home, it is probably because you want to save money. Whether you're a serious penny-pincher or just one out to save a few bucks here and there, here are a few thrifty gardening hacks that may help you out:
1. Drip Irrigation with a Plastic Bottle.
Ensuring that your plants remain properly hydrated throughout the day is crucial. However, it can often be a time-consuming process. When you need to go out of town for a day or two, or you just want some extra help and have no one to call, you may want to consider relying on a plastic bottle. Yes, a plastic bottle can be a life-saving hack when it comes to watering your plants.
You will take a plastic bottle, such as a soda or water bottle, and puncture holes all around the sides. Stuff an old, lonely sock in the bottle and bury it into the garden. Once buried, fill it up with water by unscrewing the lid. The sock will then absorb, retain and slowly distribute the water to the plants. Overall, this process mimics that of a drip irrigation system, which can cost anywhere from $150 to $340 or more, depending on the size of your garden and the local rates for labor and materials.
2. Use Coffee Grounds to Repel Insects and Enrich the Soil.
If you have noticed a major problem with insects in your garden, especially slugs and ants, then you need to do something before your plants are destroyed. However, the last thing you want to do is use harsh chemicals in the garden. Plus, they're expensive. An alternative is to use your used coffee grounds to create a protective barrier around your garden, which will keep the annoying plant-damaging pests away. Supposedly, it does this due to the caffeine content in the coffee. In addition, coffee grounds serve as an organic addition to your soil, which can help improve water retention, drainage and aeration.
3. Manage Weeds with Cardboard.
If you want to create a garden that doesn't require tilling, is healthy, requires little maintenance, and contains zero signs of stubborn weeds, then heavy-duty cardboard is key. You will simply lay the cardboard down over the existing grass and overlap all edges by a minimum of six inches. Apply roughly eight inches of shredded leaves on top of the cardboard and wait.
The best time to do this is during the spring and summer seasons. Keep an eye on the area and pull any green weeds that you notice trying to come up through the crack. If things get too out of control, add another layer of cardboard and leaves. It may take two or three times to truly kill off all of the grass.
DIY hacks like these three are often experimental, and it may take time to get the results that you want. However, they can make your life as a gardener a lot easier. If you need some assistance getting your garden setup, you may want to consider speaking to a landscaping professional such as those at Outdoor Solutions Landscaping.