How to Grow Plants in Florida
One of the gardening challenges of growing plants in Florida is that there is generally no cool, dormant period to offset the consistent warmth of the air and soil temperature.
Plants that grow in Florida must be well adapted to the almost year-round warmth of the long growing season and must be able to withstand the possible depredations of disease brought on by the long growing season.
There are three distinct planting zones in Florida: the north, the central, and the southern zone. The north and central zone are about a month apart in optimal growing months, and the south is virtually a 12-month season. In the north and central regions, the best time for planting vegetables and many other plants is in the fall—after the heat of the summer has dissipated. However, if you prefer to bypass the problems associated with the heat, e.g. bugs and insects, heavy rain, and oppressive humidity, you may want to consider an indoor garden, or hydroponic gardening.
If you decide to do most of your gardening indoors, you must follow a number of steps to improve your soil and to improve your chances of growing some beautiful flowers, shrubs, and whatever else you might have in mind. Here are some tips enhance the growth of your indoor vegetation.
INDOOR HYDROPONIC GARDENING
The beauty of indoor hydroponic gardening is that every aspect of your gardening can be tightly controlled and regulated. In fact, you don’t even have to worry about the character of the soil, because in a hydroponic setup, plants get most of their nutrients and stimulation directly from other sources like water and grow lights.
In hydroponics, you supply all the nutrients your plants need into the water supply, rather than the plant working to pull those nutrients from the soil. Therefore, their root systems stay smaller not needing to expand searching for and extracting nutrients. This means the plant has more energy leftover to put towards its leafy growth and/or fruiting and flowering development.
With everything the plant needs provided through fertilizer and water, there is no need for weeding, and no worries about diseases and pests which might be in the soil. For the purposes of anchoring the plant, use growing containers.
Truly organic soil has a high humus content—humus is the nutrient-rich result of decayed material like leaves, grass clippings, compost, and other things. It should be rich and loose, with lots of air, as plant roots need that space when they’re trying to expand and grow in search of life-giving nutrients. High-quality organic soil is comprised of minerals and living organisms which make it a healthy medium for your plants and shrubs to grow. There are lots of ways to improve your soil to achieve the best yield possible.
If your plants are not thriving as expected, conduct a test on your soil. A soil test kit will help you determine exactly what’s missing from your organic soil, so you can add anything which might not be there. Your soil can then be prepared with compost, peat moss, and aged manure to provide the vital nutrients your plants will need. Make sure to include this organic matter, rather than relying on chemicals or fertilizers alone which only supply a few of the necessary nutrient and ignore the overall health and richness of the soil.