Spring Garden Agenda
Spring is a great time to move plants around, change the design and divide perennial plants.If you are eager to change your garden, planning the design on paper may save you headaches down the road. Note whether your have sunny or shady areas, good or bad drainage, which plants are to stay or go and any other information you may need for a revised garden. Color is often overlooked. Do you want a garden with related colors or a more natural look with a mixture. It is really just a matter of personal preference. Taller plants are generally better at the back of the garden. If you're having trouble planning it, most garden stores will gladly help with the design. For an easy care garden, don't overlook hostas. They come in many varieties, sizes and colors. They can be divided every year and therefore save you money in the long run.
If you have a smaller area and have containers and window boxes, now is the time to clean them out and refreshen the soil. When you've prepared the soil, start picking out the plants. A nice cheerful color combination is red, yellow, orange and white. Be sure to water and fertilize regularly because there is limited soil in the box or container.
If you haven't already done so, it is a good idea to prune back your roses - hybrid teas, floribundas and grandifloras. Pruning them hard in the spring helps them grow stronger roots and stems and eventually grow larger and more plentiful blooms. Ideally pruning is best done in March, but be sure to have it done by mid-April. Adding compost to the soil will help to add nutrients back into the depleted soil.
Rhododendrons will be blooming from April until around the beginning of June. Make sure to feed them before and after they bloom. This is when they need it most.
Lawn care is always a big challenge in the spring. A lawn should be aerated, fertilized and bare patches should be seeded. Moss needs attention. Apply moss killer and rake out the dead moss when it turns black. Check your product for specific directions.
Always be on the lookout for pests and disease. If you get control early on, they will be easier to manage throughout the season. Many trees and shrubs benefit from a winter oil/sulphur spray. Read the label carefully though before using it. Check your garden for slugs in spring and treat before they get out of hand. There are non-chemical methods such as slug traps which are better for the environment. When using any pest control, be sure to consider your own and the the neighbors pets. Rat and mouse bait need to be used with extreme caution!