Growing Sensations

Dig into these gardening trends as spring kicks in

By Kelsey DeClue

After the long, gray days of a Midwest winter, nothing hits better than the opportunity to get outside and get our hands dirty. There’s just something special about watching nature around us come to life — perennials popping from the cold earth, tiny, yet hardy, buds forming on the trees and bushes. Even though just a little over a month remains until it’s largely safe to get back in the garden and yards, now is the perfect time to prep your landscape for the new growing season. So after we’ve cleared the debris of last fall and this past winter, just what kind of trends for garden and yard are we looking at for 2023? Let’s find out.

Container gardening
Yep, it’s not going away, but instead, taking on a bit of a new role. Container gardening can be done in most gardens, no matter the size. Of course, it’s great for small, urban spaces, but there are also many great ways to incorporate containers into even the largest lawns and lanadscape spaces. You just have to be selective about what you want to grow. Thankfully, there are so plenty of options to choose from for your garden. Some great go-tos for containers are succulents, herbs, geraniums, hibiscus, impatiens, sweet potato vines and begonias, to name a few. Think of a container as space to create a visual pause in your landscape. Choose a vessel that is bright or ornate that calls attention as not only a planter, but also a decorative item.
Going greener
People are allowing nature to take over instead of using synthetic products to force growth or get rid of pests. For any threat or growth need, there is usually a natural solution: if you have pests, find the natural defense and deploy it. For example, if you have aphids destroying your plants, then ladybugs are what you need. Hungry worms invading your garden space? There are many home remedy solutions like using vinegar or even dish soap that will keep them at bay. Using the all-natural method builds a thriving ecosystem that works within nature, protects your plants, pets and loved ones. It’s exciting to know that you’re encouraging ecosystems in your own backyard. Why not even plant some native pollinators to attract some bees and butterflies? Incorporating wildflowers, lavender or even let some of that pesky clover stay on the lawn among the grass to encourage the natural pollination of your plants.
Another trend we’re likely to see in 2023, is even more at-home composting. There are so many amazing composters on the market that can easily be used in your backyard. The less waste we produce and the more we can reuse, the better for the environment. The compost you make can be used to fertilize your garden and houseplants and will release important nutrients back into the soil.
Abundance gardening
This concept is exactly as it sounds. The abundance gardening trend is all about making your garden or landscape a bit wild, more productive and connected to the earth. Don’t be afraid to throw traditional or archaic landscape constructions out the window. For example, mix in herbs, vegetables and other edible plants with the rest of your landscape, instead of reserving them for designated garden plots or raised beds. This approach will create a unique outdoor gardening and yardwork experience that allows you to actively interact with all the parts of your landscape. The key to making abundance gardening work? Take note of sun versus shade spots and varying hydration needs. Cohort similar needs and you’ve got a recipe for success.
What would a good trend be without a nod to the past? Blame it on British television influences or the allure of the old-money gardens of Martha’s Vineyard, but think romance and luxury. Plants like roses, lilac, hydrangea and hollyhock are back. Think of this trend as an elevated version of a cottage garden. To make it work, the look is casual but not disorganized with a palette of pink, purple and white. The foliage is pretty and delicate and combined with white fences, gravel or brick pathways and ornate or antique birdbaths, then you’ve got yourself the nostalgic garden of 2023.
Casual conversation
OK, so you’ve got yourself a yard and garden not to be rivaled. Might as well enjoy it as much as possible, right? That’s where the final trend of 2023 comes in. Seating is everything. You’ve heard of bringing the outside in. Well, in this case, we’re bringing the inside out. Incorporate comfortable and conversational seating areas throughout and among your garden that bring you and your guests into the heart of everything you enjoy about your outdoor space. Sleek, comfortable seating, outdoor dining sets, hammocks and fire pits are just a few features that will bring context and a sense of belonging to your garden. Complete the look with electric or solar lighting and you won’t want to be indoors during the warm months.