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‘I’m a gardening expert – here are the 5 most common mistakes you’re making in the garden’

While homeowners may think the worst mistake is something small like forgetting to water plants and then dying, landscapers argue that garden design and the location of trees and plants are the most common.

1. Planting a tree or plant which grows too big in the wrong location

Fiona Jenkins, gardening and landscape expert at, said: “One of the most common gardening mistakes is planting a tree or hedge in the wrong location. 

“It then grows too big and causes problems for you and potentially for your neighbours.

“When choosing trees, do some research on how tall and wide they typically grow, then consider if the mature tree will still be suitable for your garden. 

“Planting too close to the house, garden sheds or even your patio can also cause problems from the tree’s root system interfering with foundations.

“Fast-growing hedges can quickly become unmanageable, which can block natural light from your or your neighbour’s property. 

“Choose a slow-growing variety so you can maintain it at a reasonable height.”

2. Not maintaining the lawn properly

Paying proper attention to the lawn will result in it being nice and healthy throughout the year.

This includes regular mowing to help keep the grass blades strong and looking good, according to the expert.

Fiona added: “There are some best practices such as only cutting the top third of the grass when you do your first mow of the season. 

“After that maintaining the same cutting height will keep the grass in good condition. Cutting the grass too short, below three inches, will result in an unhealthy and patchy lawn. 

“Shorter grass cannot retain as much water, and this can result in the grass going brown if there is not much rain.”

Grass roots normally grow three times deeper than the grass height so the taller the grass, the deeper the roots. Deep roots help result in more nutrients for the grass and a healthier lawn.

3. Improper maintenance to keep the garden in good condition

Neglecting the maintenance of the garden can create all sorts of problems, including overgrown plants which could be a haven for rats.

Plants and trees also need regular pruning to maintain healthy growth as well as keep them watered and fed.

4. Not planning a garden design beforehand

Fiona continued: “There are many considerations when planning a garden which should be taken into account before you buy any plants. 

“This includes establishing which direction your garden faces or its aspect, the amount of shade it gets during the day and the type of soil you have.

“Deciding how you want to use your garden is also vital. Is it going to be an entertainment space, do you want a vegetable plot, or do you just want lots of flowers? These are important questions to ask yourself before designing your garden.”

5. Watering too much or too little

One of the biggest mistakes in plant maintenance is getting the amount of watering wrong. A plant which is not getting enough water may turn brown and crispy over time, while watering too much can result in rotting.

The gardening expert noted: “Don’t rely solely on the season to guide your watering of your plants. Conditions can change regardless of the time of year so be vigilant. 

“Check the soil for dampness and observe how your plants react to the weather so you can learn and anticipate their needs.”



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