Spring Cleaning in the Garden

March 11, 2016

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It’s time for a bit of spring cleaning. No, I’m not talking about organizing closets and emptying the garage, but rather getting the garden in shape for the upcoming growing season. Start with a walk through the landscape.  Make a note of pruning, mulch removal, winter repair and other spring tasks that can now be completed. Investing time early in the season means you’ll have a healthier beautiful garden and more time to relax and enjoy it throughout the summer. 

Cut back perennials and sub-shrubs like Russian sage and butterfly bushes with hand pruners. Break out the loppers for those larger and harder to reach stems. Use an electric hedge shear or weed whip with a rigid plastic blade for mass plantings of perennials and grasses. Compost all pest- and herbicide-free materials. Mark the location of late emerging perennials like butterfly weed and hardy hibiscus. This will prevent you from accidently weeding them out of the garden.

A bit more information: Prune summer and fall blooming shrubs like potentilla, summer blooming spireas and Annabelle-type hydrangeas now until growth begins.  Wait to prune spring flowering shrubs like forsythia and lilac until right after their spring blossoms fade.

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