7 Easy-Care Picks for Your Spring Garden (PHOTOS)

7 Easy-Care Picks for Your Spring Garden (PHOTOS)

Gardening experts share their picks for low-maintenance spring gardens.

By Judy Koutsky

Not all of us were born with a green thumb. And yet the idea of planting a spring garden is so enticing -- especially if we could figure out what to plant and how to make it grow. We talked to some gardening experts to get some tips on flowers and veggies that are very low maintenance, yet yield a nice outcome.

1. Heirloom cherry tomatoes. These will produce for months and months and
even survive a light frost. Plus, they require little water, says farm-to-fork restaurateur Trish Watlington, who grows many of her own ingredients.

2. Onions and scallions. These are incredibly easy to grow, notes Watlington, and will even help ward off garden pests if planted among your vegetables. They’re so hardy you can dig them up and harvest a few and then just put the rest back in the ground – and they’ll keep growing.

3. Knock Out Roses. These are the easiest roses to grow and don’t require special care, unlike hybrid tea and floribunda roses, says Tina Sottolano-Cain, horticulturalist and container garden designer. Plus, they have a continuous bloom cycle of every five to six weeks.

4. Tropical Dipladenia Vine. “This flowering vine practically thrives on neglect,” notes Sottolano-Cain. It comes in bright red or pink and it’s extremely drought tolerant. It’s also a prolific bloomer all summer long and grows well in beds and borders mixed with other annuals and perennials.

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5. Profusion zinnias. Simple to plant and hard to kill, these zinnias are shorter than other varieties and come in assorted bright colors -- sure to make any garden bloom, says C.L. Fornari, a gardening consultant and author of five gardening books, including Coffee for Roses.

6. Artichokes. “They are big and beautiful and hardy, so plant them somewhere spectacular because they are a show stopper,” says Jen Boulden, a green living expert. And best of all, they will return again next year.

7. Parsley, rosemary, and basil. These yummy edible plants are easy to grow, and require very little maintenance, says David Marciniak, a gardening and design expert. Plus, they taste great in so many dishes.

What do you grow in your garden?

Judy Koutsky is the former Editorial Director of KIWI magazine, a green parenting publication. She was also Executive Editor of Parenting.com, AOL Parent and BabyTalk.com. Follow her on Twitter @JudyKoutsky.

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