by Bronwynne Bailey
We are getting glimpses of spring, warm days which erupt with sunshine and cool breezes. We can do a bit more in the garden and start seedlings.
- Decide on plants you would like to have in your spring garden and flower beds.
- Consider buying new plants that you have not tried before.
- Determine how many seed packets you need; remember to order extra seed if you are planning to replant for a second crop of flowers after the heat of the summer.
- Start cold-weather vegetables in a cold frame: broccoli, cauliflower, onion sets, English peas, kale, carrots, collards, beets, radishes, kohlrabi, Chinese cabbage.
- Plant asparagus in prepared beds.
- Start herb seeds indoors to transplant outdoors in early April.
- Plant ornamental trees and fruit trees.
- Plant new roses or move old roses soon after February 15.
- Follow soil sample recommendations or use a slow-release, complete fertilizer.
- For roses, apply a top-dressing of fertilizer under a thick layer of compost or mulch.
- Spray the orchard with dormant oil spray. This helps control insect eggs and disease spores. Do not apply if temperatures are expected to dip below freezing within 4 hours of application. Always read the pesticide label.
- Prune evergreens for size and shape. Cut out any dead wood of flowering shrubs.
- Prune hydrangeas that bloom on the current season’s growth during the last week in the month.
- Do not prune spring-flowering shrubs until after the bloom period is complete.
- Home Accent
- Winter-blooming shrubs can be forced to bloom indoors by cutting stems when buds begin to swell and placing them in water. The warmer indoor temperatures stimulate blooming. Place sprays of forsythia, flowering quince, oriental magnolia, or fruit trees in a vase in a sunny window.
- Check tools for rust and clean if needed. Prevent future rust by lightly coating tool heads with mineral oil or used motor oil.
- Flowering quince, saucer/star magnolia, forsythia, bridal wreath spiraea
- Crocus, early daffodils, helleborus, hyacinths, pansies, snowdrops, snowflakes, violets.
- Dogwoods, pyracanthas, yaupon hollies, Chinese hollies, cotoneasters, nandinas.