3 Reasons Why Beginner Gardeners Kill Plants and What to Do About It

by Zac Spade

When you're just starting out as a gardener it is exciting to think about all of the possibilities in store for your plot of land.

You might head to your local home and garden store and come home with a bounty of fertilizer, gardening tools, and plants along with visions for your very own Garden of Eden.

And then you'll, rightly so, be quite disappointed when you're garden of only a moment starts to decline. It seems like your plants begin to die one by one. What's gone wrong?! You followed all the steps! You bought all the right materials! There are many mistakes beginner gardeners make. Gardening is an art and a science. It takes time to hone your skills to cultivate the garden of your dreams.

However, as a beginner gardener, there are definitely a few rules of thumb that can help you avoid killing your plants. Let's take a look at three reasons why beginner gardens kill their plants and what you can do to avoid making the same mistakes.


This is a classic mistake made by first time gardeners -
I've been guilty of this myself! While water is vital to a plant's survival, there is such a problem as too much of a good thing. Over-watered plants are likely to get root diseases and fungal problems. If you're plant is wilting even though the soil is wet or if the leaves are light green in color and failing to thrive, it may be suffering from over-watering.
Over-watering is the most common cause of early plant death. Make sure to water your plants only when the top of the soil is dry and be sure your plants have proper drainage. These are the best ways to avoid over-watering and ensure a long healthy life for your new plant friends. Additionally, when starting a new garden, one of the best ways to keep your plants hydrated is choosing the right kind of hose.

Too Much Food

Like I mentioned, too much of a good thing can easily turn into a bad thing. And giving your plants too much food is a surefire way to kill them. Your plants might be suffering from too much fertilizer if you see yellowing and wilting of lower plant leaves, browning of leaf margins and tips, black brown or rotting roots, slow to no growth, leaf drop, crust of fertilizer on soil surface.
The right amount of fertilizer will encourage healthy growth in your plants. So to avoid killing your plants by feeding them too much food, stick to the guidelines laid out by your fertilizer of choice.

Not Enough Sunlight

The final mistake beginner gardeners make that lead to early plant death is not providing enough sunlight for their plants. Plants use photosynthesis to grow and thrive. This means plants transform sunlight, air and water into food to help them grow. Lack of sufficient sunlight will stunt your plant's growth. Also, if you see your plant tilting or leaning in the direction of light, it's probably not getting enough sunlight.

Plants that need full sun exposure require six to eight hours of direct sunlight per day. The easiest way to avoid killing your plants through insufficient sunlight is to be sure of how much sunlight each plant needs and make sure it gets it! Also, look here for more tips regarding setting up your new garden and ensuring your plants get sufficient sunlight.

Where to From Here

Trying your hand at something new takes courage and time. Don't beat yourself up if some of your very first plants die an early death - it's bound to happen! But keep in mind these three tips when you're crafting your garden in order to set your plants up for the best and longest life!

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