May 11, 2021
It’s that time of year! Spring is coming up fast, and while choosing the perfect flowers is important, there’s more to consider for your spring gardening plans. For your garden to be truly great it requires a lot of preparation and maintenance for the upcoming season.
Have a look over your gardening tools, sharpen blades, grease hinges and start the search for anything that you’re missing.
It’s no surprise that having your tools up to scratch makes it much easier to dig out those unnecessary, pesky weeds, or prune down
some of those unruly plants. Having the right gardening tools can make the entire season much easier.
It would most likely be worth restocking gardening essentials like compost and soil. Don’t forget things like plant supports and it could be worth pre-assembling structures like tomato cages while you’re busy. If you do this now you can spend more time planting and looking after your spring plants when the weather improves.
Give your garden a clean, remove anything in the way until you’re back to bare soil. Dead organic matter can be put on your compost pile, providing you have one. Any already composted mulch or organic matter can stay where it is but anything too fresh should be removed.
Your main concern should be those dreaded weeds. If any are still alive you don’t want them competing with your beautiful spring flowers. Remove your weeds from the soil, and either burn them or place them into the middle of a working compost pile where the heat will kill them before any seeds can germinate.
Once the frost has cleared, the soil should be workable and you should be able to start prepping those important garden beds. The first thing you want to do is till or turn your soil as it becomes compact over winter. Work the soil to a depth of 12 to 14 inches to loosen it up, any mulch or leaf litter that is well-composted should be mixed right in but anything too fresh should be removed.
Up next you should add your compost and amendments, you should also test your soil to check the PH and nutrient levels, this will tell you what type of materials you might want to add. If your soil quality is poor it is important to add compost to improve the texture of the soil to help your plants thrive!
If your soil is especially poor you could add to your gardens design and even make use of a raised bed.
A lot of trees and shrubs can use a good prune around this time of year. Late winter and early spring are a great time to prune back old wood, although not all of your plants will want pruning around this time of year. But some that do enjoy a good old prune at this time are Buddleia, lonicera and Roses.
Before you start snipping though, there are a couple of things to consider. You should use isopropyl alcohol and a clean rag to sterilize your pruners before each cut, as not to spread any plant diseases when moving between your plants. Also worth mentioning is that while there are plants you can prune this time of year there are also some which you definitely should steer clear from, such as the Camellia, Rhododendron and Syringa.
Hopefully these tasks should keep you busy with your spring gardening, especially if we are still in a similar situation as we are now! Our gardens have become our havens, so keeping them looking their best has never been more important!