Spring is just around the corner, so it’s time to dust off the gardening gloves and get ready to get a little dirty. Whether your garden is limited to indoor potted herbs, or you’ve got a full-scale garden with raised beds, growing something green is just good sense. It’s good for you, and good for the environment. As winter fades into spring, it’s time to freshen things up. Winter was a time for dreaming of garden plans and tending indoor plants, and spring will be full of planting and weeding and busy, busy garden chores. Take a moment to savor the quiet time between and catch up on a few often overlooked garden tasks.
If you live in a southern area, it’s time to start prepping for hummingbirds. Clean out your hummingbird feeders, or get a new one, and make sure you’ve trimmed back trees or bushes that cats can use as hiding places around feeders.
- Now is a good time to transplant your houseplants, before the outdoor garden gets into full bloom. If you’ve got plants that have become root bound, or have been in the same soil for years, it may be time for a change of venue.
- Once the threat of frost is gone, it’s time to remove winter mulch and wraps from your outdoor plants and pots.
- As soon as you can turn the soil, start working in your compost from last season to get your soil in shape for planting.
- Do a quick scan for any branches or stems that were damaged over the winter and remove the broken, dead or damaged parts.
- Inventory your tools and equipment and take care of any needed repairs or replacements before it starts to get busy.
- Start looking into rain barrels. Not only will you keep rainwater from becoming runoff, but you’ll have a great source of chemical-free water for your garden.
While you’re at all this gardening, take a few easy steps to make your yard even greener.
Get water smart – use a broom instead of a hose to clear your drive and walkways. Adjust sprinklers to only water your yard (and not the sidewalk).
Protect without pesticides – garlic and cayenne can be your best friends in the fight against aphids, sprinkle them around the base of your plants. While you’re at it, encourage beneficial insects like ladybugs. Coffee and eggshells sprinkled around plants helps repel ants, snails and slugs.
Black gold – no, it’s not oil; it’s compost. If you don’t have one already, start a compost pile to transform kitchen and yard waste into nutrient-rich soil. Take it a step further and get to know your neighbors by starting a community compost bin.