10 Ways to Conquer Your Fear of Gardening

You might not believe it, but you were born with a green thumb. It may have gone untended for a while, but it's there waiting for you to nudge it awake. Put away your theory of being a plant killer, that anything dies under your care. Forget those nagging thoughts of where your garden will live or when you'll find the time, it's there somewhere. It doesn't have to cost a fortune and you'll get more than you give. So, here are 10 tips for conquering your fear of gardening:

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Gardening Tips for Renters

Want to bring more green to your house or apartment? Using a few easy, inexpensive techniques, <a href="http://www.thehorticult.com/">The Horticult</a> shows how you can garden like you own the place -- without risking your security deposit. You don't have to own your home to create a garden that reflects your personal style. Grow your favorite plants and create an inspired landscape -- or patio, interior, or balcony -- using these fun, low-commitment methods. (Although you might want to check with your landlord about the larger projects!) And if you move, you can take it all with you. These 10 tips for renters will give your garden a new lease on life.

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Summer Checklist

Summer is a gardener¿s busiest season. If you¿re short on time or not sure what to do, follow this easy summer gardening checklist to keep your lawn and garden in great shape all season long.

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Drought-Tolerant Grasses

Drought! The word itself strikes fear into the hearts of gardeners everywhere. Scarce water resources, especially in hard hit areas such as California and Texas, are making it almost impossible to maintain traditional style lawns. That's why many people are replacing their lawns with groundcovers and native plants. But for those who want a lush green lawn, here are some less-thirsty options.

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How to Improve Garden Soil

Many homeowners inherit bad garden soil ¿ but you don¿t have to live with it! Learn how to get the best garden soil possible through amendments, composting, and more.

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Top Shade Perennials

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Landscape Ideas

Landscape ideas provide inspiration, and studies show that upgrading your landscape will add value to your home. Here are some great landscape ideas to improve your home's outward appeal.

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The Best Fragrant Flowers for Your Garden

Plant a few of these aromatic gems around your yard and add a whole new level of enjoyment.

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    Everything in this slideshow

    • Dianthus

      This family of old-fashioned favorites is grown for their pink, white, or red, spicy fragrant flowers and their often-evergreen clumps or mats of gray-blue, grassy leaves. Taller types are excellent for cutting. Dianthus includes both annual and perennial types with the perennial types suited to Zones 3-9.

      Name: Dianthus selections

    • Gardenia

      Among the most famous fragrances in the garden world, gardenias bear a heavy scent and lovely white flowers. Happily, this shrub can be grown indoors or out.

      Name: Gardenia selections

    • Video: Create a Fragrant Garden

      Watch this quick video for tips on filling your landscape with wonderfully fragrant flowers.

    • Nicotiana

      Look for old-fashioned varieties of nicotiana to fill your garden with a strong, sweet fragrance. Plant it near your patio or bedroom window as the scent is most pronounced at night.

      Name: Nicotiana selections

    • Sweet Autumn Clematis

      Want to make a big statement at the end of the season? Try sweet autumn clematis. This large vine (it can climb to more than 25 feet once established) literally covers itself in masses of starry white, fragrant flowers. You can smell it from across the yard on warm, sunny days.

      Name: Clematis ternifolia

    • Oriental Lily

      Powerfully fragrant and stunningly gorgeous, Oriental lilies such as the famous 'Star Gazer' can perfume an entire garden. Oriental lilies bloom in mid- to late summer in shades of white, pink, and yellow. They're wonderful cut flowers, too.

      Name: Lilium selections

    • Garden Phlox

      Phlox is one of summer's showstopping flowers. It bears big clusters of candy-colored blooms on 4-foot-tall stems from mid- to late summer. These blooms bear a sweet fragrance that's most apparent on warm, sunny days.

      Name: Phlox paniculata

    • Rose

      The rose has earned its place as America's favorite flower. It's no wonder why: The blooms are beautiful, perfect for cutting, and many are wonderfully fragrant. The flowers come in a wide range of colors, from dark reddish black to pure white.

      Name: Rosa selections

      Test Garden Tip: Do a sniff test on roses before you buy them. Some are powerfully fragrant and others bear no scent at all. Plus, their fragrance varies as much as their color -- some smell citrusy, others smell floral, musky, or like fruit.

    • Sweet Pea

      Prized for their intensely fragrant flowers, most sweet peas are 4- to 6-foot-tall vines. Their flowers appear in nearly every shade, plus stunning bicolors.

      Name: Lathyrus selections

      Test Garden Tip: Like roses, some varieties aren't fragrant at all. So if you want a scented selection, make sure you read the description on the plant tag or seed catalog.

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      Lily-of-the-Valley

      Don't let this little beauty fool you -- though it's small, lily-of-the-valley packs a big fragrance in its nodding white or pink bell-shape flowers. It's a tough, low-care groundcover you can practically plant and forget in shady spots.

      Name: Convallaria selections

    • 11 of 21

      Hyacinth

      For early spring perfume in the garden, nothing beats hyacinths. Plant them in fall in well-drained soil to enjoy their powerful scent the following spring. Flower colors range from purple to pink, red, white, and yellow.

      Name: Hyacinthus selections

    • 12 of 21

      Iris

      Bearded irises grace spring garden with color and perfume. Available in almost every color of the rainbow, irises also have a range of fragrances, from anise to floral to fruity.

      Name: Iris selections

      Find the Best Purple Flowers for Your Garden!

    • 13 of 21

      Lilac

      Lilacs are among the most recognizable spring flowering shrubs. If you miss their large cone-shaped flower trusses, you can't avoid their intense fragrance. Lilacs are durable and able to put up with most any growing conditions except shade.

      Name: Syringa selections

    • 14 of 21

      Flowering Crabapple

      Crabapples are small to mid-size trees that range in habit from low mounds to upright, column-shape, or weeping specimens. In spring, they are covered with fragrant white, pink, or red flowers, and in fall with small yellow, orange, or red apples that attract birds.

      Name: Malus selections

    • 15 of 21

      Heliotrope

      Gather some friends around heliotrope in bloom and ask what it smells like. Some say cherry pie, others say vanilla, and yet others say grapes. No matter what you think it smells like, you're sure to love the sweet, rich fragrance that emanates from the lovely clusters of purple, blue, or white flowers.

      Name: Heliotropium arborescens selections

    • 16 of 21

      Lavender

      Transport your nose to Provence by growing lavender in your garden. The flowers and foliage of this herb produce aromatic perfumes that permeate the countryside of southern France in mid-summer. In your own garden, grow it in well-drained soil in full sun. If you plant it next to a walkway, you'll catch a whiff every time you pass by.

      Name: Lavandula selections

    • 17 of 21

      Sweet Alyssum

      Known for its carpet of lightly fragrant flowers in white, rose, lavender, or purple, sweet alyssum is an easy-to-grow, low-maintenance cool-season annual. Rarely growing more than 6 inches tall and 1 foot wide, sweet alyssum is a good addition to edgings, beds, rock gardens, hanging baskets, and window boxes.

      Name: Lobularia selections

    • 18 of 21

      Peony

      This old-fashioned, fuss-free plant can thrive for years with no special care at all. The petal-packed blooms are perfect cut flowers -- but not all are fragrant. Give the blooms a scent check or read up on a variety before you buy.

      Name: Paeonia selections

    • 19 of 21

      Moonflower

      Like nicotiana, this annual is perfect for evening gardens as the big, pure white trumpet-shaped flowers are most fragrant as the sun goes down. It's gorgeous and easy to grow as it thrives in hot, sunny weather.

      Name: Datura selections

    • 20 of 21

      Southern Magnolia

      This Southern tree is widely planted for its beautifully fragrant, creamy-to-white spring flowers; large, shiny, evergreen leaves with a fuzzy underside; and red fruit in fall. It's a large tree, reaching 60 to 80 feet tall and 30 to 50 feet wide. Smaller cultivars are available.

      Name: Magnolia grandiflora

    • 21 of 21
      Next Slideshow Vertical Garden Ideas

      Vertical Garden Ideas

      Gardening is a pastime appreciated by many, but what if tight quarters keep you from a sprawling green garden? It's time to start thinking vertically when it comes to your gardening projects this season, and -- lucky for you and your green thumb -- the options for executing your new vertical garden only go up from here! Get inspired by these clever vertical garden ideas.
      Begin Slideshow »

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