The end of winter is almost in sight, which means it’s time to prepare your garden ready for the start of the lovely season of Spring, and the rest of the year.
Here are some pre-Spring jobs you may want to consider over the coming weeks:
Begin with a clearance
It is easy to let shrubs and trees get too big without realising it, especially as we tend to plant densely for instant effect. So, conducting a big clearance and opening up overgrown spaces gives you new gardening opportunities for Spring.
Clear any ivy that might have grown unruly over the winter months, and you can also coppice any hazel to stumps about 25cm high. Although, because this will shoot back, you may be tempted to pull out stumps and as many roots as possible. However, this can be a lot of work and, even though it is said that rotting stumps can harbour disease, there is the fact that dead wood supports around 75% of wildlife in a woodland, rich pickings for beetles, fungi, insects and birds.
Clean up any paving
Paving can go dark in colour and look very weathered in places when left over winter, so it’s a good idea to give them a good scrub or jet wash to brighten up.
Thicken up a patchy lawn
Spring is the perfect time to spruce up your lawn if it’s looking a bit thin, especially with the dry weather we had last summer. Simply rake the ground gently to loosen the soil, spike it with a fork, sprinkle in a general garden fertiliser followed by a handful of fresh grass seed (approx. 35g per sqm). Rake the seed in, keep it well watered and the new grass will quickly fill in the patches. This tried and tested method is a favourite amongst groundsmen.
Vegetables to plant
You could plant vegetables and flowers together. Runner beans and sweetpeas are especially good together. Plant sweet peas in early spring and runner beans in early summer. Also, effective grown together are dwarf marigolds and tomatoes, which can both be planted out when the risk of frost has passed or planted together in a greenhouse. The flowers not only look lovely, but they'll also help attract bees which makes for a better vegetable crop.
With any new planting decide on the feel you want. Contemporary, traditional, cottage or natural are some options. Choose suitable plants that radiate that look.
If you’re planting roses pop a banana skin in the planting hole – as the skin decomposes it releases magnesium, potash and other nutrients which can boost the health and colour of the roses.
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