In 2020, COVID-19 ensured that many people were stuck at home looking for useful things to do, and gardening topped the list of pastimes that enjoyed a gigantic surge in popularity. While the future remains uncertain, one thing is for sure: Gardening will remain trendy in 2021.
Whether you’re a complete gardening novice, a hobby gardener, a professional, or an aspiring pro interested in horticulture courses, keep reading. No matter your horticultural inclination, if you’re hoping to do a bit of gardening in the coming year, here are the 5 garden trends that you need to know.
#1 – Easy-to-Grow Vegetables
If you’re a novice gardener, and have recently taken up this hobby for the first time, then you’re likely going to be interested in charting the easiest path to success! As such, this rules out fussy, high-maintenance plants or anything that take a long time to germinate. Instead, new gardeners should seek out low-maintenance, easy-to-grow crops that don’t take long to mature. Some examples of these currently-popular crops include radishes, bush beans and lettuces.
#2 – Wild Gardens
Tidy garden rows have their place, but for 2021, rambling abundances of wildflowers, herbs and grasses that aren’t neatly contained within garden beds are taking popularity. Better yet, these wild gardens can provide safe habitats for bees, birds, butterflies and other critters to enjoy.
#3 – Heirloom and Open-Pollinated Seeds
In 2020 during the heart of the lockdowns, many seeds and seedlings were either hard to find or totally sold out. In particular, heirloom and open-pollinated seeds were highly sought after, and they’re likely to remain in high demand in 2021 as well.
Why? Heirloom and open-pollinated seeds are popular because they’re the easiest to harvest a predictable crop of new seeds from the plants you grow with them. In contrast, when you harvest the seeds from plants grown with hybrid seeds, there is no way to obtain predictable results. Secondly, in some cases, it is illegal to harvest these seeds in the first place if the seeds are patented.
When gardeners harvest their own seeds rather than buying new seeds every year, there’s substantial financial savings involved. Harvesting your own seeds is a cost-effective activity that could save you hundreds of dollars in food bills every year.
#4 – Raised Garden Beds
One of the biggest challenges in gardening is building soil quality. Doing this from scratch takes time, but there are a few shortcuts. One of the quickest and easiest shortcuts is building raised beds. But – there’s a trade-off: The soil you buy to fill the raised beds can get expensive. Of course, you don’t have to buy the soil; if you have plenty of time and patience, one alternative is to fill the beds with homemade compost.
In summary, if you decide to build raised beds, you should expect to spend either time or money on the project – or both! But if you’re successful in growing a portion of the food you eat, these costs will be offset later when you harvest your crops.
#5 – Patio, Balcony and Container Gardening
These days, many urban and suburban dwellers are creating small gardens in any space they have available. They’re planting seeds in containers and placing them on patios, balconies and sunny windowsills, and you can do the same!