We, gardeners, are always on the lookout for new garden hacks to spice up things here and there in our gardens. Below are 5 garden hacks from Wonderland Gardens that every gardener will find useful.
Presoak to speed up germination
Different seeds have a different germination rate, not because their embryos vary but because their shells have varying water-resistance. All that seeds need to activate and grow is some water to reach their embryos. Now, to jump-start the germination, all you do is presoak your seeds for up to 24 hours. However, you must be careful not to soak them for too long as they might rot. Presoaking helps in breaking the water-resistant coat/ dormancy and the seeds swell and the embryo begins to plump up. But, be sure not to soak seeds that germinate better in cool/cold temperatures in warm water and vice versa.
Used coffee grounds in your compost pile, as fertilizer and as an insecticide
You don’t have to throw away the used coffee grounds because they might be very useful in your garden. First, coffee grounds are very rich in nitrogen, and as such, they make a great addition to your compost pile because they speed up the composting process by breaking down the organic items in the compost pile. Again, the coffee grounds mask the unpleasant smell that comes from the pile.
Second, used coffee grounds make a good fertilizer thanks to the abundance of nitrogen. And, just to note, used coffee grounds are not acidic. The acid present in coffee beans is water soluble thus it goes to the coffee itself leaving the grounds acid-free.
Again, you don’t have to go for harsh chemicals when dealing with pests in your garden. All you need is coffee grounds because most pests, including slugs, can’t stand it. Plus, this will even be more advantageous if you have acid-loving plants because as mentioned above, unused coffee grounds have water-soluble acid which will end up in the soil with time.
Use leftover beer or Clarified neem oil to kill slugs
Buy Neem oil in concentrated form then dilute it yourself following the recommended dilution rates on the bottles. Neem will repel all types of insects including thrips and aphids. What makes it even a better option is that there is no harm in eating plants that have been sprayed with neem.
The other option is to use leftover beer in your garden to attract then kill slugs. All you need is beer in containers placed in various spots in your garden, and it will attract slugs then kill them once they crawl in.
Use an old milk jug as a makeshift watering can
A good garden hose can help a great deal, especially when watering large lawns. However, there are times when a watering can is more ideal. The good news is that you don’t have to buy one if you have an old milk jug because all you do is drill a few holes on the lid and voila! Also, this will be a great way to save water because you will have a better control of how much goes where. However, this will only work for simple watering tasks.
Use disposable diapers to retain moisture in your potted plants
Another great garden hack is laying diapers in your potted plants to retain moisture longer. This is especially helpful during the overly dry/warmer weather where pots require frequent irrigation. They are a great alternative to water retention crystals because they too contain hydrogel.