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Seasonal Tip

Gardening Tips for Early Spring
March 21, 2009

The time between March into early April is a transitional period – not quite winter, not quite spring. Temperatures and weather patterns can change with little or no warning.

This is a great time to plant trees and shrubs! By planting them early, their root systems will have an opportunity to develop well before we are thrown into the hot days of summer.

This is also an ideal time to start feeding lawns. As grass begins to grow, it will benefit from an early feeding. I also recommend applying crab grass preventative at this time. If applied to your lawn now, it will keep last fall's crab grass seeds from even sprouting! (Beware though, it will also keep any grass seed that you apply from sprouting too!)

Take this time to get planting beds ready. Clean up old leaves and debris left from the fall. Cut back perennials, ornamental grasses, and butterfly bushes. Add compost and work it into the soil. Freshen your mulch. Fertilize shrubs and trees.

This is a great time to plant cold crops if you are itching to start planting: radish, lettuce, spinach, peas, and broccoli.

For early color, pansies, primrose, hellebores, heaths, and heathers are ideal, not to mention forsythia, pussy willow, "Mellow Yellow" spireas, and witch hazels. Ornamental flowering trees and shrubs are also available and will be blooming soon. Buy them in bud and enjoy the flowers!

Now is the time to start sowing annuals indoors, along with warmer weather vegetables and herbs. Remember, they need 10 to 12 weeks time before they can be transplanted into your garden.

With so many activities to keep us busy, it will be warm before you know it!

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