Starting a City Flower Garden

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When you live in an urban metropolis like Philadelphia that’s full of concrete and brick-lined streets, sometimes you can become a bit detached from nature. The best way to get back in touch with the beauty of Mother Nature is to plant something.

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When you live in an urban metropolis like Philadelphia that’s full of concrete and brick-lined streets, sometimes you can become a bit detached from nature. The best way to get back in touch with the beauty of Mother Nature is to plant something where you live. Here are tips for when and how you can start your very own city flower garden.

Select the Perfect Location

The first step to creating your own flower garden in the city is to select the perfect location for your plants. If you have a townhome, you might have a small backyard patio or deck area that catches a lot of sunlight. If you have a classic Philly-style rowhome, you likely have a front porch where you can attach a potting rack. If you don’t really have a space where you can plant outside, choose a window that gets plenty of sunlight and use a window box or basket for your flowers.

Choose the Right Flowers

Not every flower will flourish in the Philadelphia region. Pick flowers that stay beautiful well into the late summer and preferably ones that are perennial (come back each year). Day lilies are pretty yellow flowers that thrive in Southeastern Pennsylvania, as are Irises and Phlox. Other varieties to consider for your city flower garden:

– Daffodils

– Tulips

– Hyacinths

– Asiatic Lilies

– Pansies

Seeds or Pre-Grown Flats?

The next decision to make is if you want to grow your flower garden from seeds (or bulbs), or purchase a flat of pre-grown flowers from your local garden center. This decision depends on the time of year (later in the season, pre-grown flowers may be better) and how much of a green thumb you think you have. If you decide to grow from seeds, choose a high quality, rich dark potting soil that is packed with nutrients. Keep in mind that some floral varieties need to germinate for a year or more before blooming.

Care for Your Flowers

The most important part of starting your very own city flower garden is providing it with ongoing care. You have to check on and tend to your flowers every day. Water them, feed them (look for a balanced 5-10-5 fertilizer for flowers) and love them regularly. There’s evidence that talking to your plants in a loving way makes them grow faster.

Timing Is Everything

One last thought: when you’re planting in the East Coast, timing is everything. You don’t have the benefit of mild temperatures all year long, so you have to get a head start. Start planning and collecting supplies for your city flower garden in the fall or very early spring.

Image Source: Flickr/shrinkin’violet

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