Tips for the Home Gardener: March
Gardeners, Get Ready!
The end of March marks the beginning of Spring. That means a whole new set of tips for the home gardener come into play! This season gives you the chance to get your hands dirty in the flower beds, set up your vegetable and herb gardens for success, and enjoy the fresh air. We know just how great it feels to finally be able to step outside and work on your landscape, so we’ve incorporated plenty of things into your to-do list for this month.
Follow these March tips:
First, always check the backs of seed packets for instructions on the best time to plant them. These packets also inform you as to whether you can start seeds indoors, or if it’s better to directly plant them in the ground. We have a massive selection of fruit, vegetable, flower, and herb seeds in our stores from trusted companies like Lake Valley, Burpee, and Livingston.
Harden off your cool weather seedlings before you transplant them outdoors, and plant your corn poppy seeds directly outside. Begin to sow warm weather annuals that require 6 to 8 weeks before planting outside. Again, see the back of the seed packet for additional information. Finally, transplant seedlings that you started last month. Follow up with a water soluble fertilizer at half strength.
For additional seed starting tips, click here.
Next, fertilize your tulips, daffodils, hyacinths, and other Spring flowering bulbs with bulb food when the foliage is 2 inches high above the ground. Plant your potted bulbs in the garden.
As early blooming bulbs such as crocus finish flowering, remove their spent flower heads. Leave their foliage undisturbed to so that they can gather nutrients for next year’s blooms. Lastly, check on the overwintered Summer bulbs in your basement such as cannas and dahlias to ensure they are healthy.
Now is the time to plant pansies and violas! Fill your garden up with these Spring beauties. Their compact size makes them extremely versatile for use around your landscape. Plant them in flower beds, containers, window sill boxes, or even hanging baskets.
Bare-root geraniums overwintered inside should be potted up. Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with moss and oxalis!
Perennial and Lawn Care Tips
We recommend that you start to edge your garden beds. Mulch beds 2 to 3 inches deep with organic mulch to keep weed growth to a minimum. Pre-emergent herbicides, such as Preen, can also help to reduce weeding. Check the packaging for application directions, as well as when to apply.
Fertilize your perennials as the new growth emerges, and stop fertilizing in mid-Summer. Newly planted perennials should receive 1 inch of water a week during the growing season, either by rain or irrigation methods. Divide your perennials as they emerge. Prune perennials as needed.
Vegetable and Herb Tips
Most importantly, before you begin to work on your veggie garden, make sure the soil is dry enough to crumble in your hand. If the soil is too moist, wait for it to dry out. Have your soil pH tested and amend as directed (we offer free pH testing). Generally, soil should be amended a few months before planting begins.
In the absence of specific recommendations based on a soil test, fertilize every 100 square feet of garden space with 1.5 to 2 pounds of fertilizer, such as 12-12-12 or 10-10-10, several weeks before planting. Spread fertilizer evenly over the area, and mix it in with the top 3 to 4 inches of soil.
Next, plow or till your vegetable garden. Plant onion sets, asparagus, rhubarb, and horseradish around mid-March. The following seeds can be sowed directly into the garden around mid-March:
- Sweet Peas
The following seedlings can be purchased from our Home & Garden Stores and planted around mid-March:
While temperatures may not be quite comfortable enough to sit outside and enjoy the weather just yet, you can still do plenty of other things around the landscape to prepare for when you can! Ready up your outdoor living space:
- Consult with our Garden Coaches for expert gardening advice
- Need helping planting? We’ve got you covered. Use our Planting Services
- Plan the perfect Spring landscape with the help of our Landscape Design Services
- Fill up your Propane Tanks for the season.
- Get your Lawn looking its best
- Beautify your space with a new Fountain
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