Embarking on a journey to create and maintain a thriving garden is not just about planting seeds and watering them regularly. It involves understanding the intricacies of your specific garden’s needs. The key lies in asking the right questions and adopting the right strategies and mindsets. In the Guide to a Garden that Thrives! eGuide, eight insightful strategies and mindsets are explored that can transform your gardening experience, and each strategy has multiple steps of questions to ask yourself in your investigation.

A plant seed sprouting with street sign post and the signs THRIVING, GROWING, and WINNING

Understanding Your Garden’s Health

Creating a garden that thrives starts with a mindset shift towards understanding your garden’s health. When your plants aren’t flourishing, it is crucial to approach the situation with curiosity rather than frustration. Instead of solely focusing on symptoms, delve into the root causes by asking strategic questions. 

Strategic Questioning for a Thriving Garden

For example, strategies three and four in the eGuide focus on the planting and watering of your garden vegetation. When your garden is not thriving or your plants are not looking too healthy, observe your plants and consider the following with regards to PLANTS and WATER.

Step 1

Begin by looking at your plant spacing. Are they either too far apart or too close together? Correct plant spacing is vital for proper root growth, photosynthesis, water intake, and plant harmony in your garden. When you are new to gardening, it is best to follow the plant spacing guidelines that are included with your plants, unless you have taken a crop planning course and have the foundational rules and guidelines for alternative plant spacing. Keep in mind that you might also need to leave more space between plants if you are not growing in the ground. 

Step 2

Next, consider whether or not you are selecting the right plant varieties for your area. You want to choose the right plant varieties for your climate as well as your current season. The right varieties also includes selecting the varieties that are resistant to certain pests or disease that may be prevalent to your area.  

Step 3

Is your garden being provided adequate water? As a general rule, garden vegetables need between 1-2 inches of water per week. It is important to observe and record the amount of water that your plants are receiving naturally to determine how much that you need to supplement Mother Nature.

Looking at alternatives to manually watering your garden? Check out this blog post on Drip Irrigation Systems for Garden Beds.

Step 4

Verify that the water you are using for your garden is clean. Sometimes, treated city and well waters can impact garden growth. Check your city water levels or investigate your well water  softener type. If necessary, filter your water or change your well water softener.

Also, be aware that most water softeners are made with sodium chloride and essentially cause the plants in your garden to die of thirst. The salt will build up in your soil over time and make it difficult for future plants to grow. To reduce the salt levels as much as possible, dilute your water with rainwater. You can also use a reverse osmosis filter.

Mindsets for Gardening Success

Along with asking yourself the right questions for your garden to thrive, it is essential to have a positive garden mindset as well. Here are some quick tips to keep in mind as you are observing and investigating any issues in your garden.

Curiosity over Frustration

Approach garden challenges with curiosity rather than frustration. Each issue is an opportunity to learn and enhance your gardening skills.

Prevention as a Proactive Measure

Adopt a preventative mindset. Regularly assess your garden’s health to identify potential issues before they escalate. Regular soil testing and climate evaluation can be proactive measures.

Harmonic Thinking

Embrace harmonic thinking. Your garden is a complex ecosystem where every element is interconnected. Consider the interplay of climate, soil health, and plant choices for a comprehensive approach.


Be adaptable to changing conditions. If a particular plant struggles, consider alternative choices better suited to your climate and soil conditions.

Your Garden Journey

Creating and maintaining a garden that thrives is an ongoing journey that involves a combination of strategic questioning, mindset shifts, and practical gardening strategies. By approaching challenges with curiosity, adopting preventative mindsets, and implementing harmonic thinking, you can cultivate a garden that not only survives but truly thrives. With the Guide to a Garden that Thrives! eGuide, you will be armed with the questions required to elevate your gardening space and empowered with the insights needed to ensure that your garden becomes a flourishing haven of health and vitality. 

To find out more about strategies three and four—PLANTS and WATER—along with the other six strategies, be sure to download your FREE copy of the Guide to a Garden that Thrives! eGuide and keep it handy the next time that you are evaluating your garden’s success!

Guide to a Garden that Thrives! eGuide

Want to learn even more about creating a thriving garden? Join Grow Your Own Vegetables for the FREE Joyful Gardener Docuseries February 20th-27th. Don’t worry if you have missed a few days. Each and every day is packed full of useful gardening information and can be enjoyed individually. Register HERE before you miss another day!

Let us know in the comments below what garden question you have found to be most useful in investigating your garden!