6 Gardening Tips and Tricks for Beginners

Veteran growers offer their best advice to those with budding green thumbs. Check out our best gardening tips and tricks for new growers.

Every experienced gardener was once a new gardener. We asked our readers to share their top gardening tips and tricks for people just starting out. Read this list before you start digging and planting.

Discover the common mistakes every new gardener makes.

1. See What Plants You Like

new gardener adviceJamie Rock
Painted lady butterfly on purple coneflower

“Look at gardens you like for ideas on arranging perennials. Also, ask friends and family if they have cuttings to share,” says Birds & Blooms reader Claire Helen Horn of Endwell, New York.

Check out the top 10 best houseplants for beginners to grow.

2. Know Your Plant Hardiness Zone

“Start simple and know the zone you are growing in,” says Kathy Lorigan of Easton, Pennsylvania.

Check out these low-maintenance landscaping ideas for your yard.

3. Try, Try Again

“Nothing is final. Plant it, and if you don’t like it, dig it up and try something new,” says Cathy Pavlak of Colonial Beach, Virginia.

Psst—we found easy ways to get free garden plants.

4. Give It Time to Grow

“Practice patience, use trial and error, and study your garden. Get dirt on your hands and talk to your plants,” says Charlotte Anne of Cameron Park, California.

Even the greenest thumbs should read these never-skip gardening tips from master gardeners.

5. Right Plant, Right Place

“Do some quick research on a plant before buying it. Look for the basics, like growth potential, soil preference and light needs,” says Kay Miller Hayes of Lambertville, New Jersey.

Try these full sun perennials that thrive in sunshine.

6. Think of Pollinators

Plant flowers that will attract butterflies. You will truly enjoy watching and taking photos of them,” says Brenda Masengill of Talbott, Tennessee.

After you finish reading these gardening tips and tricks, learn how to help bees and pollinators in 10 easy ways.

Lori Vanover
Lori has 20 years of experience writing and editing home, garden, birding and lifestyle content for several publishers. As Birds & Blooms senior digital editor, she leads a team of writers and editors sharing birding tips and expert gardening advice. Since joining Trusted Media Brands 13 years ago, she has held roles in digital and print, editing magazines and books, curating special interest publications, managing social media accounts, creating digital content and newsletters, and working with the Field Editors—Birds & Blooms network of more than 50 backyard birders. Passionate about animals and nature, Lori has a Bachelor of Science degree in Agricultural and Environmental Communications from the University of Illinois. In 2023, she became certified as a Wisconsin Extension Master Gardener, and she is a member of the Wisconsin Society for Ornithology and sits on the organization's Publications Advisory Committee. She frequently checks on her bird feeders while working from home and tests new varieties of perennials, herbs and vegetable plants in her ever-growing backyard gardens.