(BPT) - No matter where you live or how green your thumb, you can enjoy the beauty and bounty of gardening at home. Now is the ideal time to plan a spring garden that will be the envy of the neighborhood.
The experts at Ball Horticultural Company share their recommended plants, top topics and tips to set up every type of gardener for success this year.
Plants for your pocketbook
Creating a stunning garden doesn’t have to break the bank. To get even more bang for the buck, select hardy plants known to thrive through adversity or fast-spreading flowers that fill in quickly.
New Hula™ Spreading Begonia is a great example of a budget-friendly plant that quickly fills in garden beds with a blanket of high-impact color, covering the soil and discouraging weeds in minimal time. They’re bursting with eye-catching blooms, very forgiving for novice gardeners, and are also great for outdoor hanging baskets and mixed containers.
If heat, humidity or drought are a concern for you, opting for resilient flowering plants can help ensure greenery and blooms no matter the weather condition. Angelonia AngelDance™, for example, thrives even in harsh conditions like high heat, producing tall flower spikes that are perfect for that cottage garden vibe. Additionally, because the stems are flexible, they bring awesome movement to your garden and you don't have to worry about breakage.
Tropical colors delight
Tropical hues are trending, which is evident by the rich, pink shade of Viva Magenta selected as Pantone’s 2023 Color of the Year. From deep burgundies to bright, energetic pinks, you can use florals reminiscent of a south beach escape to turn your outdoor space into a personal oasis.
To add instant color to sunny spots, try all-season blooming Easy Wave® Burgundy Velour Petunias either solo or in mixed planters, baskets, gardens and window boxes. Brighten up shadier spots with the Glimmer™ Burgundy Double Impatiens, which produce beautiful, rose-like blooms that are easy to maintain, as the plant’s old blooms do not need to be removed as they fade.
If you live in climates that require low-maintenance plants that can withstand chillier temps, try Oscar® Cherry Velvet Dianthus, which has frost tolerance and a soft floral fragrance. Another hardy option in a vibrant shade is the Sombrero Poco™ Hot Pink Echinacea, a compact version of winter-hardy prairie coneflower, with bright, non-fading blooms. As an added bonus, the plant is known to be deer resistant and attract song birds and butterflies.
Impress with vegetables
When you grow your own vegetables, you reap even more health benefits, including the positive emotional boost of being outdoors, plus you save money on groceries. This year, try unique homegrown choices that add fresh flavor to your meals and impress guests at your next gathering.
To upgrade your vegetable platter, check out Sun Dipper Tomatoes. Their unique, elongated shape makes them easy to hold and ideal for dipping into your favorite spreads and party dips. Another visually mesmerizing variety is the Mocha Swirl Snack Pepper from Burpee Plants. This sweet snacking pepper produces 4-inch fruits that ripen green and white at 50 days and then to rich chocolate-red stripes at 70 days.
If you're limited on space, you can still enjoy the benefits of growing your own fresh vegetables by exploring indoor, tabletop options. Kitchen Minis Quick Snack Cucumber are a restricted-vine crispy-and-delicious cuke that can be kept inside on a sunny windowsill or counter for a fresh harvest over a few weeks.
Living color indoors
Have you recently downsized, or do you live in an apartment, condo or townhome? No matter where you live, you can still enjoy the beauty and benefits of plant parenthood by exploring indoor-flowering varieties that brighten spaces and enhance interior design.
Yellow is reminiscent of sunshine and conveys positive emotions, which is why the ColorBloom™ Gerbera is such a happy addition to indoor spaces. Perfectly happy to grow in small indoor pots, you'll enjoy long-lasting blooms when you place them in sunny locations throughout the home.
If you prefer leafy varieties in your home, try color- and texture-rich foliage plants, such as Jurassic Dino™ Rex Begonia. With bold patterns, including a beautiful rose-pink leaf color with green edges, white dots and a black leaf center, the plant sets the mood and accents any room.
From indoor tabletops to outdoor landscapes, porches and beyond, garden experts agree: There are plenty of plant options to help you create a stunning space this year.