Spring is the ideal time to start gardening. However, the garden needs to be prepared for planting after the cold winter. Before you start planting flowering plants and working in your vegetable and fruit garden, complete these essential spring gardening chores to ensure that your garden flourishes.
Spring Gardening Essentials
Clear Up Flower Beds and Borders
Before you can plant new seedlings, clear up the flower beds and borders. Remove dried leaves and other debris from all over the garden and pond. This is the time to trim old and dead branches of perennials as well. You can also retain an arborist to trim back trees and shrubs.
Clean the Greenhouse
The next step is to clean the greenhouse completely. Wash the outside and inside and apply a disinfectant on all surfaces after removing any insects, mold, and fungus that have established themselves over the winter. Wash the potting benches and seedling trays, clean and paint pots, and paint the greenhouse if it needs a fresh coat of paint.
Fix Fences, Gates, Trellis
As part of your spring gardening activities, you also need to clean and examine other garden fixtures such as fences, gates, and trellis. If your garden has furniture that was left outdoors in the winter, these need to be cleaned and painted as well. If you have stored the garden furniture indoors, bring them out and place them in the garden. You might need to mend broken fences and paint the trellis if it has been affected by the winter weather.
Similarly, if you have a playhouse, tree house, pergola, or arbor in your garden, these need to be cleaned, disinfected, mended, and painted. Check these structures for mold, fungus, and insects and remove them before they take over the structure. Wash the outside and interiors of the structures.
Bird Feeders and Bird Baths
Another set of garden fixtures that bear the brunt of winter weather are bird feeders and baths. These need to be cleaned, disinfected, and painted if necessary. Test the bird bath to ensure that it does not leak. Once the weather turns mild enough for the birds to return, you will be in a position to fill the feeder and bath, adding bird song to your garden.
Eliminate Garden Pests
The time before spring planting is ideal for hunting down and eliminating garden pests. This will save you plenty of time and effort later on as your garden will be relatively pest free during the growing season.
Another must-do activity before spring planting is a soil test that will help you determine the right fertilizers to apply. You should also add mulch to the empty flower beds and bald patches of soil, to enhance the soil quality.
Build or start a compost pit and use the garden debris and trimmings you have collected to prepare mulch.
Start Seedlings for Long Growing Plants
Even if the weather is still too cold to plant outdoors, you should be preparing the seeding trays for plants that need to grow for a longer period of time. The seedlings will be ready for planting once the weather becomes milder.
If your garden does not already have water butts, now is a salient time to install them. If the water butts were moved indoors during the winter, bring them out and place them in locations where they can catch rain water during spring precipitation. This move will help save the environment, reduce your water bill, and ensure healthier plants thrive on and live off rain water.
Spring Gardening Tools
Once the weather is appropriate for planting you will be busy in the garden, digging, planting, and so on. Before that, clean and inspect all of your gardening tools, sharpen and repair broken tools, and order any new ones that you will need.
Plan Your Garden
You should also take the time to plan your garden, decide which flowers you want in the flower beds and which vegetables and fruits you plan to grow this spring. With this decided, you will be in a position to order the seeds or seedlings you require and ensure that they are on hand the weekend you decide to plant them.
While the actual planting of the garden can start only after the weather is conducive, you can begin work on the garden and prepare it for the spring planting just as the weather becomes warmer. This will give you a head start on your spring gardening; giving you time to ensure that the plants thrive by the time summer is on its way.
By checking the soil, tools, and garden structures, and preparing seedlings ahead of time, you will soon have a colorful garden that truly heralds spring in your neighborhood. A little bit of planning will help your gardening efforts go more smoothly as you will have the tools and seeds you need when you are ready to plant.