10 Tips for Gardening in St. Augustine, Florida

July 20th, 2021

At Shearwater, you can get to the roots of a healthy lifestyle. 15 miles of nature trails, a state-of-the-art Fitness Lodge and a friendly, supportive community help you live a more active life. And with community garden beds available for residents to rent, you can even grow your own fresh, delicious produce so you can eat healthy, too.

Florida has one of the longest growing seasons, with frost-free weather from February to December. That means at Shearwater, you can grow nearly year-round. Here are 10 tips to help you get started!

  1. Start with a strong foundation. Tilling your garden bed – whether raised or in the ground – has many benefits. While you’re at it, work in some compost and organic matter like leaves or grass clippings to help improve the sandy Florida soil.
  2. Think moist. With frequent showers, you may not need to water much when gardening in Florida. But during any dry spells, make sure your plants don’t dry out.
  3. Water smart. Take advantage of rainfall, drip irrigation or even DIY soda bottle irrigation to make the most of your water. Watering deeply, and less frequently, is generally better to encourage large root systems.
  4. Landscape wisely. Native plants are built for the climate in the area, and tend to flourish with little care. Try to incorporate native Florida plants where you can.
  5. Mulch thickly. Mulch not only helps conserve water, but natural mulch also breaks down and feeds the soil. Spread a layer of mulch that’s several inches thick for best results.
  6. Fertilize regularly. Even just a few doses of fertilizer can go a long way during the growing season. Chemical fertilizers work, but so do natural options like compost, seaweed and used coffee grounds.
  7. Plan seasonally. Generally, spring and fall are the best times to plant both ornamental and eatable greenery. Take a look at this calendar to know the best times to plant in St. Augustine.
  8. Get an early start. When planning a vegetable garden, start your seedlings indoors six to eight weeks before planting outside for a jump start. You’ll get to harvest sooner, and enjoy it longer!
  9. Choose wisely. Think about the area you want to plant in. Does it have full sun or lots of shade? Does it get a lot of water during rain or does it stay dry? Pick plants that work with the conditions for the best results.
  10. Have fun! Most importantly, enjoy yourself! Even if you’re not successful, you can always try again. Even if you don’t end up with any tomatoes to enjoy, you can still have fun with the whole process.

Shearwater is a new home community located in St. Augustine, Florida, that offers new homes, resort-style amenities and a laid-back lifestyle you won’t find elsewhere. To learn more about everything this community has to offer, join our Interest List.