What’s the difference between a new gardener and an experienced one? The experienced gardener has killed way more plants, the saying goes.
That truism speaks to the fact that gardening is a highly trial-and-error venture – and one where some plants are just going to struggle and die no matter what you do.
The good news is that the more you know and the more “right” things you learn to do, the less mayhem.
In other words, messing up helps hammer home lessons that, if you pay attention, lead to more and more successes. Some of the best gardeners will admit to botching their way to botanical proficiency.
Growing plants in the Southwest (New Mexico) is a challenge. Unfortunately, it is hard to convince new gardeners, especially those from other states, the importance of watering during the late fall and winter. As a retailer, I always tell them that plant roots here do not go dormant, and need to drink, so leave your hoses out; we cannot rely on rain or snow for moisture. Needless to say, each spring many customers complain that their plants died during the winter. They forgot to water.