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I am new to gardening and need some advice?

This is my first spring in a house with a garden and I have no idea what I’m doing!
The garden has a lawn, a huge evergreen bush, a pond with two fish, bedding areas, a patio with moss all over it and a spot at the bottom that I thought would make a nice vegetable/fruit patch.


How often do I cut the lawn?
How often do I trim the hedge?
Do the fish need feeding?
When do I plant stuff?
How do I prepare a vegetable patch?
How do I get rid of the moss?

Lots of questions I know! Can anyone help me?

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11 Responses to “I am new to gardening and need some advice?”

  1. Huge said :
  2. Bob G said :

    These people can be a lot of help for the information about plants. I’ve been using them for years and have had excellent results.

  3. NEIL B said :


    Cut your lawn as often as it needs to. It will grow quickly depending on the weather, wamr and wet will get it going. Cut it to the length you want it. Be careful not to let it get too long and straggly otherwise when you then cut it it’ll be all yellowy and coarse.

    The hedge will depend on what type of hedge plant it is. Some you can get away with a good trim in the autumn, but others may need a light trim every month or so particularly throughout summer.

    Personally I would feed the fish a bit through out the year, but more in winter.

    Plant stuff when it says so on the plant labels. Plant labels at garden centres usually have pretty good information on them. Keep an eye on how big plants will get when you buy them. Otherwise you may get one taking over everything.

    A veg patch is easy. If its going to be a new one you can just dig it over and plant straight away. If its an old one, some decent manure would be good. Try planting fruit and veg that you like. If it isn’t successful then try something else. In my experience, onions, carrots, beans, beetroot, raspberries and rhubarb are all easy to grow.

    For the moss, of you are happy to use it then get some moss killer. If not, and its a fairly well built patio, then get a power sprayer going to blast it all off. Then just pick bits out as and when it tries to grow back.

    If in doubt don’t get too stressed about what might grow in what soils etc. My rule of thumb is if I like it I’ll plant it. If it doesn’t survive then its notice to me that it wasn’t right so I try something else. Eventually it’ll all start looking after itself.

    Hope some of that helps.

  4. gps said :

    Roughly speaking, cut the lawn once a week during the growing season. 1 or 2 times during winter.
    We have our hedge trimmed once a year.
    Yes they need feeding.
    Plant stuff spring (when the chance of frost is over) or autumn (before chance of frost). Really depends what you want to plant.
    Veg. patch – weed kill if necessary, dig over and dig in compost or manure.
    Clean moss of with a stiff broom, bleach & water.
    Consider buying the fruit expert, the vegetable & herb expert, the bedding plant expert advice books they are very good.

  5. proofreadergirl said :

    There are some good books, such as the one Geoff Hamilton wrote. I refer to it a lot. Have a look in your local bookshop. The best way, though, is to learn from someone who knows what they’re doing. Perhaps the neighbours would pass on their knowledge to you?

    Just some general points:
    I’m no expert, but I think fish like to eat pondweeds, supplemented with a little fish food.
    The hedge – trim it when it looks tatty, but not before May because you’ll disturb any nesting birds. The lawn, again cut it when it looks as if it needs a haircut, maybe weekly in the Summer, occasionally at the moment. Don’t walk on it or cut it if it’s wet, (you’ll ruin it, ) and don’t cut it too short because it’ll lose water & might go brown.
    Veg patch – dig it all over now, if it’s dry, to get rid of the weeds & aerate the soil, then get planting! Seed packets have times to plant on them, many are now/April. Then the trick is little & often, hoeing to keep down the weeds. Again don’t work it or stand on it if the soil is wet – you’ll compact it, the top will crust & water will run off, and roots will find it hard to get through the crust.
    The moss I would just scrape off. Nasty chemicals have a way of finding their way to the drains & then into the river.

    If you do nothing else, stick in some potatoes and some salads.
    Enjoy your garden!

  6. RAYMOND Y said :

    Cut your lawn more in wet weather,it will grow quicker, otherwise once a week should be OK.
    Trim privet about once a month. Beech once a year in late June.. Leylandii about once every 3 to 4 months just the bits to keep it neat.
    Feed your fish every day.
    Plant container plants at anytime, as long as the ground is soft, remember to keep new plants well watered.
    Seeds tell you the planting time on the packet.
    Did your vegetable patch and cover to stop the weeds until you have it planned. or your seeds germinate in pots.
    The only way to get rid of moss is to use a propriety moss killer from the garden shop,scraping it out does not work, it only comes back again.
    Good luck, and do enjoy it, its great fun, even the hard work!!
    from paticat

  7. ANF said :

    Cut the lawn anytime that it has grown more than 4 inches long that is summer and winter alike. In the spring and winter do not cut it too short as it will encourage moss to grow.
    Same for hedge, trim when it needs it to tidy it up. If it is well established then it will not hurt when you do it but frosty weather could cause the branches to die back a little.
    Fish do not need feeding more than once a week in the winter as the live at the bottom of the pond.
    By seeds and go on the guide lines on the seed packets. For instant results by plants at a garden centre but they will cost you.
    Dig over the veg patch as soon as you can to let new air into it and to give it a chance to get well watered. Dig in the weeds and they will rot away and provide green manure for the veg. Sprinkle with “Growmore” fertiliser as shown on the sack. Try to get some well rotted horse manure to dig in if you can. Do all of this now if not sooner. Again buy the seeds in packets and follow instructions. Potatoes are a good thing to plant and you by tubers from a good garden centre. Broad beans are also an easy grow and just need spraying against black fly when they arrive.
    Scrape the moss out with a lawn rake and then put down some fisons evergreen, I assume it is the lawn that has the moss. See earlier comments about lawn cutting.
    Go to a newsagent and buy a gardening magazine or two as they will give you up to the minute hints about your garden.
    Have some fun and watch the back when digging.

  8. jduck1979 said :

    How often to cut the lawn depends on the time of year.. generally every 2 weeks between April to end of October… sometimes once a week during the summer.

    Hedge……. generally only once a year.

    Fish, I don’t know ‘cos my Dad filled our pond in before I was born ‘cos one of my cousins tried to go swimming in it.

    When to plant stuff, depends on the plant…. look it up in a book.

    To prepare a veg patch, depends whether you’re growing them yourself from seeds or seedlings bought from a garden centre. But usually involves lots of digging + turning the soil over beforehand.

    To get rid of Moss, you can buy “Moss Killer” or “Moss & Weedkiller” from all good garden centres.

    A good investment when starting out gardening is one of two books from D.G. Hessayons “The Expert” series of books (about £7.99 each), in particular:
    “The Garden Expert”
    “The Flower Expert”
    “The Tree & Shrub Expert”
    “The Lawn Expert”
    “The Rock & Water Garden Expert”
    “The Vegetable & Herb Expert”
    Along with the Readers Digest “Gardening Year” book

  9. Toni f said :

    lawn = once a week
    hedge = cut befor the end of march then leave untill september so that you do not disterb nesting birds.
    fish = need to be fed daily when the weather gets warmer.
    it is all common so buy a book on gardening

  10. dave h said :

    cut the lawn about every ten days.trim the hedge about once every 2 months.of course the fish need feeding do you?.look on labels they will tell you the best time to plant.use moss killer.

  11. mowerman said :

    gardeners world every friday 8.30 bbc2 or gardeners world mag out every month


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