The first day of spring this year is March 20! While snow and frost are still threats beyond this date in many climates, it’s nearly time to start thinking about your spring landscaping. Start the season off right with these landscaping tips.
Before you pick up a trowel or purchase a single seed, decide how you plan to tackle your spring garden. You might want to break it up into stages so you don’t become physically exhausted or strapped for time. If you feel overwhelmed at the entire prospect, it’s wise to hire a professional landscape designer to help you select plants and get them in the ground.
Pick the Right Spring Flowers
Many flowers only bloom during the spring. These can give your garden a boost of colour before summer flowers blossom. When you visit your local nursery or the garden section of your local home improvement store this spring, the flowers you find there are most likely native to your growing zone.
However, you still need to consider the climate of your yard. Sun exposure, soil conditions and slope all affect which plants will grow best. Check flower labels for guidance regarding sun exposure and watering for the best results.
Prep the Garden
Even with your flowers picked out, you can’t plant them in the ground just yet. Here’s how to make sure the garden is ready to help your flowers flourish this spring:
- Clear out debris from last fall: If you neglected your leaf raking and plant removal duties last fall, it’s time to catch up. Prepare the garden by removing dead annuals and pruning back perennials in anticipation of this year’s new arrivals.
- Prepare the soil: Dig a trowel into the soil as soon as it’s workable. Remove weeds and old roots. Spread a 10 centimetre layer of compost over the flower bed and work it into the soil with a spade to a depth of ¼ to 1/3 metre.
Care for Your Landscape Through the Spring
Many novice gardeners fail to consider more than sun exposure and watering frequency. However, if you want a successful landscape, plan to follow these care tips throughout the spring:
- Fertilize your plants: Apply a balanced fertilizer around trees, shrubs and perennials as soon as you notice new growth. Keep in mind that shrubs such as azaleas and camellias benefit from high-acid fertilizer. Ask a local nursery worker or a landscape designer for more useful fertilizing tips.
- Prepare for pests: From wildlife to insects to stray animals, pests can wreak havoc on your landscape. Deter wildlife with fencing and wire mesh. Then, use insecticide as needed to ward off harmful insects.
- Plan for growth: Look at seed packages carefully to determine how large your plants will become in six weeks or even six months from now. Follow planting distance guidelines. Even if your garden looks sparse for the first few weeks, the plants will fill out over time, and you don’t want them to become overcrowded.
- Maintain a compost pile: Start your compost pile by collecting plant debris and dead leaves from the garden. Continue to add equal parts “brown” carbon-rich materials – such as straw and dried leaves – and “green” nitrogen-rich materials – such as weeds and grass clippings – to your compost pile throughout the season. Turn the pile regularly. By next spring, your homemade compost will be ready to help your garden grow and flourish.
If you need help starting your spring landscaping off right, please contact The Grounds Guys today. Our services include designing landscapes, removing plant debris, planting flowers, fertilizing and much more.