There's an old and well known saying that goes 'the grass is always greener on the other side'. Of course, the point of that expression is that the grass isn't actually always greener on the other side; it's just that our own sense of inadequacy makes us feel that way.
But what about the saying 'the plants usually flower more beautifully at the commercial nursery than they do at your home'? Well, that expression might not speak as deeply to the human condition as the earlier example, but it really does happen to be true.
Commercial nurseries pull out all the stops to ensure that the blooms on their flowers are as big and as bright as possible — and that they keep blooming for longer. How do they manage it? In this article, we're going to pull back the curtain and reveal some of the secrets that nurseries employ to encourage fantastic flowering.
All Green started out as a little nursery in a backyard shed, and in just a few decades it has grown into a huge family business with two massive locations. You can buy a variety of plants at our nurseries, and get tips on how to get the most out of your plants by speaking with our team.
Encourage excellent flowering by pinching back and deadheading
Pinching back is a process that removes the main stem of a plant, encouraging the growth of new stems. This process encourages a fuller growth, with more stems, and denser blooms.
Additionally, plants should be deadheaded: by removing dead and faded flowers, the plant will have more energy to spur a longer lasting bloom.
1. Water your flowers just the right amount
It might sound ridiculously simple, but this is the number one thing that nurseries have to do to ensure big blooms: water your plants just the right amount.
Concerned by the lack of vibrant blossoms in your garden? You might be overwatering or underwatering your plants, and not even know it. After you purchase and repot your flowers, it's pretty common to lose track of that helpful tag which had all the instructions about light and water.
At All Green, our horticultural experts are always happy to share what they know about plants. Contact us about your purchase, and we can tell you how much water your flowers need, and how often you should be watering them.
2. Put the flowers in the right place
Plants need the right amount of sun if they're going to be healthy and flower. Scout your garden before planting flowers, and see which areas get the right amount of sunlight for the varieties you intend to plant.
Other locational factors, like where your flowers are planted, can make a big difference in terms of the attention they need. For example, when considering watering, plants in containers will tend to dry out faster than plants in the ground. Additionally, plants in small containers will usually dry out faster than large ones.
3. Different plants flower at different times of year
It's only natural to feel disheartened when, after visiting a vibrant commercial nursery, one returns home and stands in judgment over one's own garden. It's important to keep in mind, however, that nurseries have certain advantages that a normal garden doesn't have. For example, a nursery has the ability to rotate stock and exhibit flowers for sale when they're at their most impressive.
Some annual flowers bloom all the year long and look fantastic in both the summertime and the bleak midwinter. But other plants only have flowers at certain times of the year. Nurseries keep their flowers blooming by only stocking flowers that are currently in season.
4. Optimise nutrition for your flowers
Happy, well-nourished plants will usually have bigger blooms than plants that have been deprived of nutrients. Nurseries impart nutrients to their plants in a number of ways, from slow-release fertiliser to liquid fertiliser that you spray onto plants while watering them.
To ensure your flowers keep blooming at home, invest in some fertiliser, and consider starting your very own compost heap.