Gardening: Gardening on a budget

Few of us have the patience and resources of Martha Stewart, but many of us still desire the beauty and vitality of a summer garden.

Here are some tips to get your buds blooming on a less than blossoming budget:

Order Flowers In Advance. Order your flowers in advance from large mail companies.

If it Looks Too Good To Be True -- it probably is! Be leery of offers where you buy a canister of "secret mix" shake into the ground add water and can expect a garden to make Martha jealous. I tried this and ended up with one flower... (according to the instructions I should have had 600).

Have A Plan. Draw out your garden on a piece of paper before planting. This will avoid the trial and error of planting and then having to move something due to sun.

Learn To Borrow. Borrow planting tools from a friend or a neighbor, you won't need them on a day to day basis, so avoid buying them until you become real serious about gardening.

Grow From Seeds. Using seeds instead of flats will save a bundle! Seeds cost as little as $1.00 a pack for thirty seeds. Save this years seeds for next year for further savings!

Deter Insects. You can minimize the use of chemicals and the frustration of a chewed up garden by using plants that deter insects such as Asters, Chrysanthemums, Marigolds and Geraniums.

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