Gardening is a great way to spend some time outdoors, add some value and aesthetic to your home, and even grow your own food. But, for those who’ve never tried gardening before, getting started can seem like an overwhelming task. If you’re ready to beautify your yard but aren’t sure where to start, check out these beginning gardening tips.

Know Your Yard and Environment

All yards are just a little bit different in how they come together. The sun will shine differently throughout the day, creating shade during some hours and bringing light during others. When there’s rain, water will also gather in different places. Different plants have varying needs, and knowing how light and water affect your yard will help set you up for success.

Just as important a consideration as the way your yard is laid out is your climate. Plants are suited to different weather conditions, and you don’t want to waste your time, money, and effort on a plant that won’t make it through the seasons. Do a little research and choose your plants carefully.

Consider What You Want From Your Garden

Another thing to think about when picking out your plants is knowing what you want to get out of your garden and how much time you’re willing to put into it. Some plants are low maintenance, while others may take years to grow and come together into the sort of garden you want. You’ll have to make extra considerations if you want to grow vegetables in your garden, too.

Prepare for Problems

While proper care is important to help a garden thrive, even the best of gardeners can have their hard work undone by natural problems. Insects are one of the most common issues—but you don’t have to resort to unpleasant and potentially harmful chemicals. Research natural pest control methods or consider companion planting, where two plants mitigate one another’s common bug issues.

Disease can be another issue that creeps up on your plants. Careful planning when thinking about your yard’s layout is important, since improper sunlight and water levels can make it easy for disease to overtake plants. Overcrowding is another issue to avoid, as too many plants in one area can make it difficult for them to get the proper nutrients they need from the soil, making it difficult to fight off diseases.

Have Your Family Help

There’s no doubt that maintaining a garden can be hard work, but it’s easier when several people get involved. Kids can get excited about the garden when you give them kid-friendly tools and let them play a role in picking out plants, plus it serves as a way to teach them about nature. And, who can deny the benefits of some good bonding time to make learning something new more exciting?

While gardening may seem daunting at first, the only way to get better at it is to keep trying. With these tips, you’re well on your way to forming that green thumb. When in doubt, start small and work your way up. Watching your garden grow is one of the most fulfilling feelings.