“All through the long winter, I dream of my garden. On the first day of spring, I dig my fingers deep into the soft earth. I can feel its energy, and my spirits soar.” – the late actress Helen Hayes.
By Dave Warner
She was, of course, not the only person on Earth who has pined for spring, and planting, a fact reflected by the designation of April as national gardening month.
It’s the season of rebirth for nature, and for many human beings. To fully appreciate it, though, you have to get ready.
Of course, knowing the right time for that depends on where you live. You need to know the last frost date in your area before you get started.
You can also start seeds inside well ahead of the last frost date for your area. By the time the warm weather has arrived to stay, you’ll have some nice young plants to put into the ground. Most seed companies tell you how soon to plant the seeds before the last frost, so just look at the package. And then make sure you plant the seeds in a place that gets plenty of sunlight.
Spring is also the time to start cleaning up your garden from last year, picking up dead branches, twigs and winter debris.
And this is the time of year to get planting beds ready. You should add organic matter to the soil, as well as fertilizer, and dig it well into the soil. Then you need to rake your garden bed so it’s level, removing rocks along the way.
As the spring goes on, you’ll want to prune shrubs that bloom early, as soon as the flowers fade, and of course there are those inevitable weeds in your garden.
Remember the words of the great Leonardo da Vinci: “Even the richest soil, if left uncultivated, will produce the rankest weeds.”
SCHEDULE A SCREENING
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