Get Ready To Garden- Your Spring Checklist

Close-up low section of woman holding spade

Hoping to get an early start on your spring gardening? That’s great – just be careful not too get too far ahead of yourself.  There’s still plenty of freezing weather still to flash across the radar. Resist the urge to set out new plants; instead, use this time to pay a visit to your garden and prepare for the coming thaw.

Things to Do in Early Spring

Early March is the perfect time to get a handle on your “honey-do” list. Here are some common early spring repairs and plans to tackle before the growing season is underway:

Give your shrubs a haircut.

Early spring is the best time to prune and shrubs or bushes. Just be careful not to hack away at any spring blooming varieties – you could accidentally stunt their growth! Remove any deadwood and encourage the shrub to grow into a natural shape.

Prep the beds.

Remove winter mulch or, if well composted, work into the top layer of the soil. Work in some leaf mold or well-rotted manure, too.

Feed your soil.?

Winter can be hard on your garden soil. So give it a little help this spring by applying a nutrient-rich top dressing. Add in a little compost or organic mix to help rejuvenate your soil and prepare for the planting season.

Don’t forget about your feathered friends!

Birds are an important part of any garden, so don’t forget to think about them when cleaning out your garden. Clean out last year’s nests from any birdhouses and don’t forget to inspect for any leaking cracks. It doesn’t hurt to check feeders for signs of damage either.
Start the growing process indoors.

If you can’t help but flex your green thumb, make sure you do it indoors in a controlled environment. This will help protect seedlings from unexpected frosts and temperature changes. Remember to re-pot any houseplants if needed.

Get some good gardening gloves.

?Never underestimate a pair of great gardening gloves. Sure, you can pick up a cheap pair for a buck at the dollar store, but don’t expect them to last for more than an hour. Good gardening gloves will stand up to planting, weeding, building, digging, raking – the list goes on and on. When looking for gloves, try to avoid any with rubber-coated palms – these will only make your hands hot and sweaty. Also, be mindful of seam placement. Poorly designed gloves will rub your fingers raw. Finally, try and find a pair with Velcro at the wrists. This will help keep the dirt where it belongs: in the garden, not in your gloves!

Start a compost pile, or use a compost bin, if you don’t have one already.

Begin by collecting plant debris and leaves raked up from the garden. Chop these up first to speed decomposition. Add equal amounts “brown” (carbon-rich) materials like dried leaves and straw and “green” (nitrogen-rich) materials like grass clippings and weeds in even layers with water and a compost bioactivator. Turn regularly. Continue adding to the pile throughout the season for rich, homemade compost next spring.

Happy gardening!

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