It’s time to make that real connection with nature and start your garden cleanup. The fresh vibrational energy that comes from the warm sun, the cool air and the tiny green sprouts peeking up through the soil will make you feel special.
Remember the purpose of a ‘messy’ garden–all those dead leaves that have blown in, all the dead branches and leaves from your perennials are providing protection. They provide habitat for wildlife, they hold in the moisture and they insulate your plant from the changing weather conditions. Remember, a messy garden is a sustainable garden!
- Plant all your cold-weather vegetable crops like peas, kale, lettuce, broccoli, onions, radishes and carrots. And your sweet peas and nasturtiums too!
- All your summer-growing seeds indoors now under grow lights or outdoors under cold frames. Keep grow lights about 2” from the top of your plants to develop sturdy, thick stems.
- Clean out perennial beds. Remove a majority of the dead material, leaving the bottom-most layer to add fresh mulch and nutrients to the soil. Remember, there will still be hibernating beneficial critters in that mulch, like worms, dragonfly eggs and a drowsy bee or two.
- Add fresh top-dressing — up to an inch of fresh compost or mulch. Freshen the soil bacteria with compost tea. Your tiny new plants can use the extra nutritional boost now.
- Divide any perennials and/or transplant those that have self-sown. This includes iris, ornamental grasses, and berry plants. Remember to add a sprinkle of bonemeal and alfalfa pellets as you transplant..
- All deciduous trees, except maples. First remove water spouts, suckers, crossing, weak and broken branches. Next, remove inside branches—so a bird can fly through. Remove fruit spurs growing on inside branches. You are opening the center of the tree so the sun can ripen all the fruit.
- Spring blooming shrubs such as quince, lilac and forsythia immediately AFTER they bloom. And please, prune for a natural appearance, you’ll be much happier with the beautiful natural fountain shape of these shrubs.
- Roses after April 15 (tax day). You know we are still going to get a couple more big freezes. When you prune, it stimulates the plant to send out new growth. By pruning too early in the season, all that new growth will get frozen.
- NOTE: Always prune to a main branch or to a branch (or bud) growing the direction you want the shrub to grow
In sync with nature,
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