Our evenings are getting brighter, days longer and weather warmer, so let's get active in your garden this Spring. It's time to get outdoors and prepare our garden beds, tidy the surrounds, prune and move & start this growing season off the right way.
Here are some essential tasks our gardening team have compiled to set you off on the right note.
Inspect your garden
Put on your inspector’s hat and head out to the garden with a notepad. It’s time to see what happened in the garden while you were indoors all winter. Take note of:
Damage on plants from cold weather
Flower/Plant beds that need to be cleaned out
Any sheds, fences, walls, or hardscape elements that may need moving, replacement or repair
Hardscaping elements—walls, fences, benches, sheds, trellises—that have shifted, bowed or rotted.
Work on hardscape issues first
Before the ground is ready to be worked, focus your energy on hardscaping. This is the time to repair damaged retaining walls, level out your stepping stones, clean out your gutters, and fix fences, benches, decks, sheds, trellises, window boxes and raised beds. These tasks are easier to accomplish while your plants are still resting safely dormant. If you have some trellises or fences in storage, you can now take them out and give them a coat of paun
Test & feed your soil
Horticultural experts recommend testing your garden soil every 3-5 years to see what nutrients or organic materials it needs and which it has too much of. When you know what your garden soil needs based on these results talk with someone at your local garden centre about which specific products to use.
Prune Prune Prune
Spring is an ideal time to prune some woody shrubs and trees. Here are some best practice pruning tips:
Prune out any damaged plants, shrubs or trees as a result of the winter weather.
Follow the general rule that flowering shrubs which bloom on new wood (this year’s growth) can be trimmed in spring.
It is also a great opportunity to shear back evergreens, once their initial flush of new growth has finished emerging.
- DO NOT prune early flowering shrubs and those that bloom on old wood (last year’s stems). If you do, you’ll risk cutting off this year’s flower buds. You might not be able to see them, but they are there, so please resist the urge to prune.
Divide & transplant any perennial shrubs
Early in Spring, when beginning to pop up, divide and transplant any perennials that have outgrown their space or grown too large enough to split. In most cases, it’s best to divide and move perennials in the opposite season of when they bloom.
Plant your spring containers and borders.
Though most annual flowers need the soil to warm up a bit before planting, some cool weather loving plants like pansies won’t mind if you plant them in the garden early, for most others its wise to wait until the last frost date where possible.
Be ready to take cover for freezing temperatures
If late spring frost is a possibility, be prepared to cover up plants that have tender emerging buds or foliage if freezing temps are in the forecast. If the buds haven’t begun to open yet, there’s no need to cover them. Old sheets and towels that have been relegated to the rag pile are a good option.