Finally our bare winter beds are filling out with the whites, yellows and purples of our spring flowering bulbs, the ground is slowly warming; it’s time to get going in earnest in the garden.
1. As part of your garden planning for the year, it is important to clean, sharpen, service or replace your tools. Blunt tools damage plants as you cut and dirty tools spread disease from plant to plant. You should also check your sheds, trellises and other wood structures in the garden and treat with wood preservatives as required.
2. Clean the moss and algae from the hard surfaces such as paths, driveways and patios. We recommend PAC Patio Algae and Moss cleaner which is biodegradable and kills the growth without the need for a power washer or scrubbing. Use our Patio brush to remove stubborn moss or Algae between Patio slabs.
3. As the temperatures rise and new growth appears, now is the time to start feeding with a general purpose fertilizer such as Osmo Pro 6 . But remember, new shoots breaking through the soil are readily enjoyed by the slugs and snails so protect them with slug pellets or liquid slug clear. These should be applied between the plants every two weeks.
4. Start off your summer Bulbs including begonias and dahlias indoors or in your greenhouse. Other summer flowering bulbs can be planted outdoors from March onwards. As a rule of thumb, plant the bulbs at a depth of two times the height of the bulb and backfill the planting hole with good multi-purpose compost.
5. As your spring bulbs begin to fade, deadhead them but leave the stalks in place to die back naturally; this returns a vital food supply to the bulb underground. You should only cut the stalks at ground level once they have withered completely.
6. In late March, you should prune your Hydrangeas by removing approximately one third of last year’s growth. Other late summer flowering shrubs such as Fuchsia, Lavatera or Hypericum can also be pruned at the same time. The spring and early summer flowering shrubs such as Forsythia or Philadelphus should be pruned immediately after flowering.Remember to feed your plants after pruning with Osmo Pro 6.
7. New Potatoes – Those newly chitted potatoes should be ready for planting, always assuming the ground is no longer waterlogged. Plant your tubers 40 cm apart in rows which are 75 cm apart. This will allow for good air circulation between your plants. But remember to protect any newly emerging shoots from frost with some garden fleece. If you don’t have the space for a potato bed, consider planting them in a deep pot on the patio instead.
8. Elsewhere in the vegetable garden, broad beans, cabbages, Onions peas and garlic can all be sown/planted out at this time. Don’t forget to put the required netting or supports in place as you plant. Just like with the potatoes, if you don’t have space for a vegetable garden, why not grow your vegetables in planters on the patio. Consider starting off the more tender plants, such as tomatoes or herbs, indoors or in the greenhouse.