I’ve spent most of my life living in an apartment in the city but when I moved to Kelowna I traded my patio for a real live yard. I didn’t realize how therapeutic and rewarding gardening could be and now I look forward to planning my flower beds every year.
This year in particular, I am eager to get out in the sunshine and get my hands dirty. And after the long winter we’ve had, you might feel the same. It’s not quite time to start planting flowers and hanging baskets yet but there are a few things you can do to get ready for the season and optimize your summer growth.
1. Clean and Sharpen Tools
Over the winter, fungus, bacteria and rust can grow on your tools. Keeping your tools clean can not only preserve their life but will prevent infection and improve performance.
2. Get Rid of Pests
Early spring is the ideal time to hunt down hibernating pest larvae before they become a nuisance. Till and turn over your soil to expose the larvae to birds.
3. Transplant or Divide Perennials & Dormant Shrubs
The majority of perennials and shrubs respond best to being divided or transplanted in the early spring when weather is still cool and soil is moist. This also give the plants time to recover from the stress.
4. Fix Fences, Borders & Planters
Before leaves and flowers start coming in, it’s a good time to inspect your borders, fences and lattice work and make any repairs that may be needed.
5. Fertilize and Mulch
Mulching and fertilizing early in the spring prevents weeds, retains moisture and as it breaks down over the summer, improves soil structure for better drainage and nutrients for your plants.
6. Prune, Clean & Clear
Prune away dead growth and tidy up your flower beds to give your new plants a nice place to live. Clearing leaves and debris will also help plants get drainage.
7. Plant Cool Weather Vegetables
March and April are great times to plant cool weather vegetables because they can withstand a little frost. Try spinach, onions or beets.
Now, let’s get out there!