Gardening requires patience, resilience, hard work, a lot of planning and expertise. The key to a good garden is the careful selection of plants. Healthier the plants, healthier will be the garden. Take into consideration the below mentioned three pivotal points that should be considered while buying plants.
Leaves: The leaves should appear strong, healthy, bright and of even color. Avoid buying plants with pale or brown leaves. Check for spots and edge burns. If the plant in any form shows sign of distress then don’t go for it. A pruned plant may indicate that it diseased leaves / stems have been cut off.
The leaves with excess chemical/fertilizers may harm your garden soil and contaminate the environment.
If you avoid chemical use in your garden, make sure that you buy organic or natural plants that never retained any chemical fertilizers or pesticides. If you find leaves eaten or destroyed, this might be a sign of pest that the plant might carry to your garden. Diseases and mildew affected plants should be avoided while buying or you may end up spreading the disease to your garden. Check the back of the leaves to track hidden pests.
Stems: Pests reside undersides of the leaves and the joints where the stem attach to the leaves. So check these areas carefully. Plants should have strong, healthy stems with no signs of diseases or mildew. The shape of the plant should give a healthy appearance. Check for signs of bruising or tearing. The main stem should be thick and give a healthy appearance. It is better to have 4-5 main stems of the plants with few branches.
More stems at the base means better plant growth. The main stem should be placed in the centre of the container and soil space should be surrounded evenly. If the stem is damaged, it may slowly kill the plant.
Roots: The roots can be used to judge the health of the plant. Too less roots indicate that the plant is weak, while too many roots indicate that the plant has lack of nutrients. Though the roots are in the pot but you can easily determine whether the plant is root-bound or not. Check the drainage point. If there are roots coming out of the hole that means that the plant has been in the pot for long. Root-bound plants once taken out of the pot need to be repot soon. They are often not bad but it indicates that the plants are actively growing.
So choose cautiously, because the life and beauty of your garden is dependent on these little decisions that you make.