A beginner’s guide to gardening: Flowers, vegetables and herbs – New York Post


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It’s hard to deny the benefits of gardening. It’s so much more than a hobby. It can change the way you eat, breathe and function within your personal space and community. Plus, gardening is a great way to get outdoors, take on a fulfilling craft and plant some new beginnings.

However, it may be hard to get started without the right guidance or tools. There are so many important things to consider, like planting in the right location, which is a must.

But trying to get a head start without the proper items could make gardening a lot harder than it needs to be. It can be especially difficult to decide what kind of plant to get or what works well for beginners.

Here’s a quick breakdown of everything you need to know to plant your favorite flowers, vegetables and herbs.


The beautiful and vibrant colors of flowers can brighten up any space. Whether you’re into roses, orchids or daisies, there is no denying that these plants will amp up the beauty of a room.

According to Better Homes & Gardens, finding the right location is a must for planting beautiful buds. If they thrive in sunlight or need shade, it will affect where and how they should be planted. You should also focus on planting healthy, porous soil. Once you’ve readied the soil, you can plant the seeds. Next, just water your space and maintain the plants as they grow. Your garden will be filled with beautiful flowers before you know it.


Growing your own vegetables will change the way you live. The benefits are obvious and there’s nothing cooler than being able to grow and nurture your own produce. If you’ve been yearning to plant your own vegetables, then we’re here to help.

Much like flowers, planting vegetables properly is all about location. It is also essential about what you can accomplish and to give your plants the space they need to grow. Gardeners.com emphasizes the importance of great soil and recommends using foot-raised beds to open up space amongst your crops. The gardening website also suggests growing your vegetables vertically and following a three-year crop rotation system to maintain your plant progress.


Herbs are known for their great aroma, ability to cure medical issues and improve spirituality. Whatever your use for these perennial plants, they are definitely must-haves for your garden. As a matter of fact, The Spruce says that they are a great choice for beginners.

Popular herbs, like basil, parsley and cilantro will ramp up your cooking routine. Scented herbs, like lavender, are great for their alluring aromas and ability to upgrade any environment.

To plant herbs, it is important that you use lean soil. If the soil is too rich, it could impact your herbs’ scent, taste or medicinal value. Like other plants, herbs need lots of sun and water to thrive, so be sure to give them a good amount of watering and tons of sunshine. Finally, you should be prepared to trim them periodically to improve their fullness and lifespan in your garden.

Now, that you know a bit about your options, picking what works for you should be easy. And, don’t worry if you still have no idea where to start. Things that you should focus on include finding a great location for your plants, nurturing them to their fullest potential and setting realistic benchmarks for all of your gardening goals.

But, don’t take our word for it. To help, The Post spoke with plant extraordinaire Tanya Anderson about the ins and outs of gardening. The garden guru is a beloved expert with more than 100,00 subscribers on her YouTube channel, Lovely Greens, and her book, A Woman’s Garden: Grow Beautiful Plants and Make Useful Things, is a must-read for all gardeners.

So check out her advice on the sacred craft and get ready to accomplish all of your planting goals.

Courtesy of Tanya Anderson

What does gardening mean to you?

“It would be easy to say that gardening is about growing beautiful cut flowers, delicious homegrown veg, or creating an attractive yard. These are the obvious rewards of gardening, yet the one that I think keeps most of us going, despite the many challenges along the way, is how it gives us a connection with nature. Gardens are more than just art or plants or sustenance – for me, they’re the expression of our hands and imagination working together with nature to create a haven. A place of peace and bounty for me, my loved ones, and for the wild animals that call it home.”

What are the overall benefits of gardening?

“The benefits of gardening are almost too many to count! The physical work is good for both mind and body, and the satisfaction of creation and growing cannot be understated. Learning what grows well and understanding the soil can bring us closer to our place in the landscape. Then there’s the joy of the first rose of summer and the sweetness of that first strawberry. Gardening is magic, pure and simple.”

Courtesy of Tanya Anderson

What do you need to begin?

“You don’t need a lot to get started gardening. I would recommend beginning with a single-window box, large pot or small garden bed. That way, you can focus on what grows in the small space and learn in a manageable way how plants grow and how to care for them. Aside from gardening space, you’ll need good organic compost (either purchased or homemade) and/or potting mix if you’re growing in a container. You’ll also need one or two hand tools, seeds or young plants, and something to water your plants. As you run into challenges, there will be a tool or technique that will help. The best way to learn is to get stuck in and be willing to learn from mistakes.”

Where is the best place to build a garden?

“Someplace with at least six hours of direct sunlight per day. Any less than that, and a majority of plants will suffer and fail to thrive. It should be sheltered from the wind, close to a water source, and be easy for you to visit. Gardening is best done daily, and if you can give it thirty minutes every day, your plants and garden will flourish.”

What are the best things to plant for beginners?

“The best things to plant for beginners will vary from region to region. For example, I live in a place that rarely gets warmer than 77F in the summer. That means that I can grow many things that those in hotter climates would find challenging in summer — leafy greens, beets, radishes, and cilantro, to name a few. On the flip side, growing tomatoes, something many gardeners find easy, is not as straightforward here since they do best in a greenhouse. The best way to understand what’s easiest for you to grow would be to stop in at a local gardening center and ask for recommendations. You can also ask gardening friends or local growers at the farmer’s market.”

Courtesy of Tanya Anderson

When should you expect to see results?

“Some plants need only a few weeks to grow to maturity and a harvest, and some need years. If you’re planning on growing food, then research the time to harvest for each type. Lettuce and radishes are some of the quickest of all, while others, like pumpkins and potatoes, need all summer. My blueberry bushes needed a good couple of years to produce much of a crop, and asparagus crowns need two to three years before they’re established and producing. My advice would be to grow some quick-cropping veg to satisfy your eagerness (and that of any children!). Understand that other plants, especially perennials, need time to fill in though and invest in growing some of them too. Their life cycles are much longer than annual plants that grow, live and die within the same year.”

How do you maintain progress?

“Progress in the garden is in the eye of the beholder. If you’re a goal-orientated person, make a list of what you’d like to accomplish and set out a plan. It will help you research and find the best way to grow a garden or just get a single crop. For those who aren’t as disciplined, I’d recommend spending a little time every day with your plant(s). Just looking at them and spending a few minutes weeding, watering, and tending will set you on the road to success.”

What’s the best advice you can give to new gardeners?

“If you’re a new gardener, start small and simple and try not to stress out over the unexpected. Gardening is a lifelong pursuit that you learn over the years, not a single season, so just sow a few seeds, keep them watered, and see what happens. If they don’t come up, try again and perhaps ask for help. Gardening is one of those things that is both extremely easy and very difficult, and if you get the bug, you’ll be learning new things for the rest of your life.”

Nine Gardening Products You Have To Buy

Solaura Outdoor Wooden Frame Garden Metal Fence Kit, $59.99


Jazz up your space with this stunning garden metal fence kit. It is durable, stylish and will protect your garden for years to come.

Vita Raised Composting and Garden Bed, $314.97


This composting and garden bed definitely lives up to its hype. Its beautiful design was made to help your garden thrive. And you can use your household waste to nourish your vegetables and plants.

VegTrug Raised Bed, $279.43


Grow your veggies the right way with this Vegtrug raised bed. It can fit up to 30 vegetables, is super easy to build and has an amazing draining system.

Super Compost by Soil Blend, $27.97


Super Compost is one of the best compost brands around. Made with beef cow manure and earthworm castings, it has all the nutrients you need to make your garden thrive.

Dr. Earth 803 1-1/2 Cubic Feet All Purpose Compost, $69.00


Optimize your garden with this top-rated compost. The Dr. Earth staple is full of earthworm casting, valley-grown alfalfa and a ton of organic nutrients, so it can be used to enhance health for any kind of plant.

Aladom Garden Tools Set , $29.99


This gardening set has all the tools you need for your garden. Decked with trowels, rakes weeders and more, it has everything a gardener could ask for. It even comes with a tote that makes carrying your tools safe and convenient.

Black Duck Bran 43 Assorted Vegetable & Herb Seeds, $17.99


Growing your own product will be easy with these 43 seed packs. You’ll be able to plant everything from spinach to parsley and you can feel good knowing that every seed is 100% non-GMO.

Black Duck Brand 25 Flower Seed Packets, $14.99


Start your flower journey with these Black Duck Brand seed packets. With such a large variety of flowers, you’ll be able to create the garden of your dreams.

WhaleLife Indoor Watering Can for House Bonsai Plants Garden Flower Long Spout,$8.99


This Nordic-style spout is the epitome of efficiency and style. Its bold bright colors will lighten up any day. Its transparent design lets you see how much water is available to your plants and its long spout and storage capacity of 1.4L, it will be easy to water every inch of your garden.

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