by Beth Cook, Mammoth Cave Transplants
In a few short weeks Spring arrives! We have had some absolutely beautiful weather this February, which really gets your inner gardener raring to go! Hopefully you took advantage of those warm temps and went to your garden and landscape to assess the tasks at hand. There is lots to be done in preparation for the new growing season! In early spring there are a few sure things to do, like cleanup tasks and plant maintenance. Use these tips and pay a visit to your garden, tend to what’s already there, and of course plant a few things too! So let’s Spring to the task!
1. Prune those roses! Roses need to be pruned now before they start to leaf out.
2. Cut back Ornamental Grasses. Now is also the time to cut back ornamental grasses to 2–3 inches to allow new growth. If new growth has already started cut back to where the new growth has begun.
3. Cut back and clean Perennials. Cut back and clean up perennial skeletons from last year.
4. Divide Summer Perennials. Dig up and divide perennials such as hostas, daylilies, Shasta daisies , ornamental grasses, and other summer blooming perennials.
5. Prune Dead and Diseased branches. Prune away dead, disease, weak, and crossed branches on trees and shrubs. Also remove suckers from trees.
6. Apply Dormant Oil Spray. Apply dormant oil spray to fruit trees, magnolias, crabapples and shrubs such as euonymus to control scale insects and other overwintering pests. Use this organic pest control method when the buds are swelling but the leaves haven't opened yet. Apply when temperatures are between 40 and 70 degrees F.
7. Re-seed and Repair your lawn. Re-seed and repair bare and damaged patches in your lawn.
8. Plant your Cole crops. Vegetables such as Cabbage, Onions, Peas, Broccoli, Cauliflower, and potatoes can been planted now as well as sowing radish, lettuce seeds and other greens.
9. Plant cool weather Annuals. Plants that can handle the cooler temps like Pansies, Viola’s, Dianthus, and Snapdragons can be planted now to give you some color and curb appeal.
10. Plan and dream! Spend the first days of spring in your yard making plans for the coming year. Enjoy the sunshine and fresh air and savor in the excitement that only spring can bring.
While we are all antsy to get our hands dirty and to start the planting season, it is still too early here in Kentucky to plant some of our many beloved flowers and vegetables. Even though we have had unusually warm temperatures this February, we need to wait until the chance for frost is gone. March is notoriously unpredictable! There may still be chilly nights to come, so don’t get ahead of yourself. We can’t wait to see you this year and as always….Happy Gardening from Mammoth Cave Transplants!
“The promise of Spring’s arrival is enough to get anyone through the bitter winter.” ~ Jen Selinsky