We all know consumers turn to the internet for ideas for just about everything they do, including gardening. With that in mind, we decided to take a look at what the five most common search terms related to garden ideas would pull up on Pinterest.
“Garden Ideas” was the base of our searching. We then followed the prompts Pinterest offered: Garden Ideas DIY; Garden Ideas For Small Spaces; Garden Ideas Cheap; and Garden Ideas On A Budget.
Some of the ideas we found were spot on and creative. Others offered limited information without clarifying that it was limited, while others might be more difficult than the pins made them seem. You can work with these ideas, either by encouraging customers to try them out and offering make-and-take classes, or by creating a more accurate and helpful idea you share with your customers. Take a page from our own book, and share the Pinterest pin in your newsletter, then spell out what corrections you would make for your climate.
Take a look at what we found in those searches. We’re including the titles of the “above the fold” pins, six in total, that each search returned.
Search Term: Garden Ideas
The most basic search we did turned up surprisingly sophisticated material. It focused on true gardening — composting, planting, and cornmeal as a pre-emergent weed control. Here are the top six stories, all of which were “above the fold,” meaning these stories were all visible without needing to scroll down:
- How to improve your garden soil without a compost heap. This pin linked to a story about which common foods could also be used in the garden, such as egg shells.
- When should I plant? This pin was an attractive guide of the best dates to plant various vegetables. The only problem is that the dates should be different for different parts of the country. For example, it recommends planting cabbage between April 1 and July 15. In much of the south, cabbage is planted in February.
- Cornmeal In Gardens — Using Cornmeal To Kill Ants And Weeds. Finely ground corn gluten is an age-old pre-emergent. This pin uses the more consumer-friendly, if not-quite-accurate term of cornmeal. Like the first article about using everyday items in the garden, this article demonstrates how you can take remove some of the intimidation factor from gardening. But you can do it with effective advice.
- Vegetable Grower’s Cheat Sheet. This is a great infographic that offers a tone of information in an easily accessed format. It includes which vegetables do best in a bed, and which ones in containers. It has a chart that includes spacing between plants, the size of the pot needed, when to plant and harvest and which pests to watch for. This is a British chart (the big give away is calling snow peas “mange tout” and zucchinis “corguettes”).
- 17 Hacks For Your Vegetable Garden. Hacks are huge. The term promises an easy fix for something that seems otherwise intimidating. Facebook is full of “hack” videos about better ways to peel bananas and iron a shirt. This list of hacks (the pin is the image shown here) includes using forks to prevent pets from destroying your plants and using toilet paper as seed tape.
- 15 Gardening Tips and Clever Ideas. These ideas are all across the board, from poking holes in a 2-litter plastic bottle and burying it next to a plant to act as a slow release watering system to the much more difficult instructions on how to build a raised bed from scratch, including adding hoops for cover if needed.
Search Term: Garden Ideas DIY
This list included the types of pins were expecting with the first search: simple things you can do at home. There are some fun and clever ideas here:
- Mason Jar Herb Garden. This pin promises more than it can likely deliver, since it encourages growing herbs like rosemary and basil year-round indoors in containers as small as Mason jars. But Mason jars are still a big trend, and you can pot up some herbs and make it clear their designed to be used up in a couple of months. Then the pot size doesn’t matter, and it turns the attention to the value of giving a “three-month supply” of rosemary as a hostess gift.
- Vegetable Grower’s Cheat Sheet. (A repeat from the first list.) This is a great infographic that offers a tone of information in an easily accessed format. It includes which vegetables do best in a bed, and which ones in containers. It has a chart that includes spacing between plants, the size of the pot needed, when to plant and harvest and which pests to watch for. This is a British chart (the big give away is calling snow peas “mange tout” and zucchinis “corguettes”).
- How To Start A Fairy Garden. This was the only time fairy gardening came up as a top trend. Vegetable gardening and vertical gardening were much more popular.
- DIY Plant Markers For Your Garden. This pin had several fun craft ideas for stylish plant markers. This might be a great girl’s night out type class, since most younger consumers prefer to do their crafts with a group of friends.
- 27 Ridiculously Awesome Things To Do In Your Backyard This Summer. This might be the most diverse of the pins. It recommends everything from fairy gardening to building a backyard pool with hay bales to creating forts and hideaways with living plants to hosting a water balloon pinata party. The only thing unifying these ideas is a sense of fun.
- How to improve your garden soil without a compost heap. (A repeat from the first list.) This pin linked to a story about which common foods could also be used in the garden, such as egg shells.
Search Term: Garden Ideas For Small Spaces
Not surprisingly, vertical gardens dominated this search term, with five of the six pins devoted to the concept:
- 7 Garden Tricks for Smallers Spaces. This pin can be described as “go vertical or go small.” One idea encouraged readers to use specialized hangers to have three or more terra cotta pots hanging in a single line from a balcony ceiling
- DIY Vertical Planter Garden. This is a how-to pin that shows how the frame work for a stair case can be used for a vertical garden. Instead of steps and rises, window boxes or planters are used.
- DIY Vertical Gardening. Another how-to pin, this one shows how to build planters and attach them to a vertical framework. The end result looks something like a more-substantial trellis.
- 15 Fruits And Veggies You Can Grow In Buckets. This is the one anomaly to the vertical gardening pins. This pin offers a list of vegetables that can be grown in utilitarian 5-gallon plastic buckets. It’s all about self-sufficiency, not decor.
- Vertical Gardening Ideas For Big or Small Spaces. As you can see in the image to the right, this pin shows how to use a number of ways to add a vertical garden to a backyard, from using plastic gutters as planters to planting up pallets.
- 20+ Cool Vertical Gardening Ideas. This diverse collection of vertical gardening ideas is strong on the styles and has several fresh ideas, like using coffee cups in a mosaic screen to hold succulents or creating an unusual planter out of plumbing pipes and elbows. It also includes several high-rise vertical gardens that home owners cannot hope to duplicate, but they’re still fun too look at.
Search Term: Garden Ideas Cheap
Cheap is a word every retailer instinctively hates. It implies poor value. Yet this search turned up some of the most creative ideas so far. Take a look:
- 15 Cheap & Easy DIY Raised Garden Beds. In the end, these raised bed suggestions are really all that easy, or cheap. But it gives enough instructions that those who want to create raised beds without buying a pre-built one can succeed.
- 30+ Easy And Inexpensive DIY Outdoor Pots. This pin was listed twice, with difference photos illustrating the pins. And it’s easy to see how this one got enough pins to send it to the top, twice over. Here are just a few of the great ideas: wrapping terra cotta pots in heavy twine and painting it; planting up used snail shells with mini plants; hanging a large picture with a hanging basket positioned in the middle so it looks like artwork; planting up champaign glasses with succulents as table decor for a dinner party, and on and on.
- [Untitled] A garden bench made from cement blocks and fence posts. Like the raised bed pin, this bench doesn’t look all that cheap, but it does look easy. This design requires no power tools. It’s just stacking cement blocks as the base, with the top layer of bricks turned so the holes are aligned. Through those holes are threaded 4×4 lumber that’s been treated. Throw on some cushions, and you’re done.
- 17 Easy and Cheap Curb Appeal Ideas Anyone Can Do. Plants are involved in only a few of these ideas, but it’s still worth looking over. Painting planted containers with the house number is a favorite of ours.
- [Untitled] Handmade garden markers made from painted rocks. These garden markers are less sophisticated than the pin listed in “Garden Ideas DIY,” but they’re also at a skill level even children can join in.
Search Term: Garden Ideas On A Budget
This search term pulled up projects that were more ambitious, requiring a higher level of gardening or construction skills than most beginners will have.
- How To: Make A Modern, Space-Saving Vertical Vegetable Garden. This is one of those pins that demonstrates how to make a specific project, and it’s one of the more attractive ones. But it’s not that easy. The provided supply list includes a circular saw, a power drill, cutting pliers, and a staple gun.
- 19 Backyard DIY Spruce-Ups On A Budget. This pin is heavy on constructing things, including an attractive DIY sectional couch, a good looking modern arbor, and several garden benches. It does have a sprinkling of smaller projects, like making a hanging wood plaque planter that has the house numbers added to it.
- 20 Genius DIY Garden Ideas On A Budget. This pin is an easy, less-skill-required version of DIY ideas on a budget. It includes painting tin cans and hanging them with ribbons to create bird feeders to painting brick walls with a mixture to create moss graffiti.
- 10 Foods That Regrow With Water. This seems like the pin for anyone who has ever tried to grow an avocado tree with a pit, toothpicks, and a cup full of water. Unfortunately, as sometimes happens with Pinterest, the link leads to another article, not the one promised.
- 10 Tips For Landscaping On A Budget. This pin has a lot of solid ideas — if you are patient and know how to garden. It encourages home owners to do everything from dividing hostas and planting them in multiple places to propagating your own rose bushes from cuttings to buying trees as seedlings. These are more sophisticated and take much longer than a casual gardener may realize.
- Top 10 Tips on Starting Your Own Vegetable Garden. This pin was obviously written by someone with plant knowledge. The giveaway was calling fruits and vegetables “edibles,” something consumers don’t do. The advice is solid, but crams a lot of steps into a brief overview. For a beginning gardener, which this pin is supposed to help, it might be overwhelming.