Ways to Prepare for Spring Planting
It’s the middle of winter for many of us. The days are short and cold, and you probably haven’t seen the sun in days. Being out in your garden may be only a daydream right now, but a great garden still requires a lot of preparation. Before you begin planting in the upcoming spring, here are some tasks to complete before you ever stick a seed in the ground.
Get Your Shed and Tools In Order
Now is the perfect time to maintain and organize the tools you’ll need when you resume planting. Sharpen cutting and digging tools before applying penetrating oil to metal prevent corrosion. You would be surprised at how easy it is to dig or cut with a sharpened, well-oiled implement. After, spend some time rearranging and organizing them. When planting time comes, you’ll know exactly where everything is and won’t spend extra time searching.
This is also a good opportunity to replenish your supplies. Make sure you have enough fertilizer and other soil amendments on hand. Pre-assemble any structures like tomato cages to get them ready for spring. It’s much easier to get this work done now than when you’re trying to plant your garden.
Clear Up Flower Beds and Borders
Have a general tidy up session and remove leaves and other debris from your flower beds. You can cut back old dead growth of grass and weeds and any perennials. If you want to be wildlife friendly, you can wait until early spring to clear out. Make sure to remove any and all weeds that could potentially compete with your future garden. After removing, burn them or place them in a compost pile where their seeds won’t be able to germinate.
Hunt Down Garden Pests Now
Taking the time to find and remove any garden pests now will help you avoid a good amount of trouble come spring. Examine the crowns of your perennials for snails, slugs or other pests sheltering from the winter cold. If clearing out last year's bedding is still on your to-do list, now is the time to cross it off.
Many people will save mulching for the spring when greenery makes its reappearance. However, your garden can benefit greatly from getting mulch in the winter. Mulch helps keep weeds from sprouting if you can get it on the soil before the weeds start to grow. Another added benefit is that mulch will keep your soil temperature more consistent and often times prevents frost from getting to your winter plants.