While a popular and relaxing hobby, gardening in the summer or during daylight hours can be more of a pain and less of a pleasure for some. From working during the day to not caring much for the sun, there are plenty of reasons it may be more efficient and convenient for you to do all your gardening at night.
Night gardens are planted and enjoyed in the moon’s light rather than the sun’s light. To get the most out of this unique way of getting in touch with nature and seeing whether you have a green thumb, plant some seeds of knowledge with these tips.
Use a Hands-Free Light Source
Depending on how far your porch or patio light extends into the yard, you may not have much light to see your garden and all its beauty. Flashlights and phones are great alternate light sources, but it can become cumbersome to aim the light with one hand and tend to your garden with the other.
Headlamps are a light source that leaves both your hands free to enjoy your garden without worrying about where and how to position a flashlight, phone, or lantern so you can see what you’re doing.
An LED headlamp with color-accurate lighting makes it easy to tell similar-looking plants apart. That way, you don’t feed, water, or trim the wrong plant. It’s vital to have the right light source for night-time gardening, so you have another tool that helps you help your garden thrive.
Water Your Plants Carefully
On sunny days, sunlight evaporates some of the water sprinkled onto flowers and plants. At night, water can linger on plant life and make it vulnerable to rot and fungi. If you’re used to gardening during the day, you may have to change your watering habits.
Rather than water the entire plant, water only the soil. It’s also best to check the soil using your handy headlamp before giving your plant some liquid TLC, because it may not need water.
How you water a garden during the evening and at night also depends on your environment. If you live in a dry, hot climate, it may be okay to water plants the more traditional way as long as you do so earlier in the night when there’s still heat lingering in the air. No matter the local climate, try not to let your plants and soil remain damp for longer than necessary.
Choose Pale and Night-Flowering Plants
Just as some people prefer to be active at night, the same applies to moonlight-loving plants. Examples of night-flowering plants include moon flower, evening primrose, night phlox, and angel’s trumpet. If you like fragrant plants, choose honeysuckle, mock orange, and columbine.
You don’t have to limit yourself to just night-flowering plants for your night garden. Flowers with light yellow, white, or cream petals practically glow under the light of the moon. You can sit in your garden and soak in its nighttime beauty. Not a bad way to spend your nights when the moon is full!
Keep an Eye Out for Plant-Loving Pests
Plant-eating pests like snails and slugs love your garden just as much as you do. Once you start gardening at night, you may come across them more than you’re used to, and that’s because slugs and snails are nocturnal pests. Use this to your advantage.
While you’re checking to see if your garden soil needs water, keep an eye out for bugs munching away on plant life. While you can use poison to reclaim your garden, the “remedy” could do more harm to your plants than good. Instead, tackle the problem at night when the pests are active.
There are two ways to get rid of snails and slugs. Option one is to don a pair of gloves, pick up the pests, put them in a container, and transport them somewhere else. The second option is to use a wooden skewer and go hunting.
Sweating in the sun doesn’t have to be a rite of passage to have a garden. Trade your gardening hat for a headlamp and become a nighttime gardener.