Tips for Getting Your Spring Garden Started

Posted on Monday, March 10th, 2014 at 7:00 am
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Gardening MagazineThe official first day of spring is March 20. Nice, warm, spring weather could reach where you live at any time! Is your garden ready? If not, try some of these tips that will help you get your spring garden started. Planning ahead is very important.

Start Pulling Weeds
Get out there and weed those flower beds and vegetable gardens now! The weeds won’t have had much time to take root and will be easy to pull. Wait until spring really gets going and those weeds will become stronger and harder to remove. You might be able to avoid having to buy a weed killing product for a while if you pull the weeds right away.

Check the Soil
Check the soil in your garden. Is it free of ice crystals and easy to crumble? If so, it is ready. Choose some early spring vegetables such as peas, spinach, lettuce, or leeks. Spring is also a great time to plant one of the flowers that grow from bulbs. Select daffodils, crocus, hyacinth, or maybe even some tulips.

Start the Seeds Indoors
Better Homes & Gardens says that you should start your seeds indoors. Let the seeds become little plants under warm, secure, conditions. Wait until they get bigger before you plant them in the garden. This could increase the chance of your plants surviving and producing flowers or vegetables.

Do a Soil Test
Martha Stewart suggests that you should do a soil test before you begin planting anything. Use a home soil-test kit to check the pH in your garden’s soil. Take several samples from different spots in the garden. If it looks good, start planting! If it needs some help, you might need to enrich the soil with dolomitic lime (to raise the pH) or elemental sulfur (to lower the pH) before you plant.

Start a Compost Pile.
Composting has become a popular way to create rich, fertile, soil that doesn’t cost any money! Start with a compost bin. Put in plant debris that comes from your garden. According to Martha Stewart, you will want to chop up the plant debris in order to make it decompose faster. Add an equal amount of “brown” materials (dried leaves, straw) and “green” materials (grass clippings, weeds) for best results. Next spring, you will have wonderful soil to start your garden with.

Assess Your Tools
Will last year’s gardening gloves do, or should you replace them? The start of spring is a good time to search for your rake, hoe, spades, and other gardening tools. Find them, and you won’t accidentally purchase extra ones that you do not need.

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