A Gardener’s March To-Do List

Thoughts and musings

A Gardener’s March To-Do List

Lewis | March 9, 2015 | 0 Comments

The cold weather is just starting to leave us here in the UK; great news for a nation notorious for moaning about the weather! Having said that, give it a month or two and we’ll be complaining about it being “too hot”! But I digress. With a little more sunshine and a little less of the bitter cold, the growing season is well and truly upon us – great news for gardeners up and down the country. But just because it isn’t scorching outside doesn’t mean that the gardening can’t begin now. In fact, it should be started now. Read on to know why.

With this advice coming from Dan Pearson, writing for The Guardian, any gardener knows that they would be foolish not to take the advice of someone with such expertise in perennial planting. He didn’t present Garden Doctors in the 1990s for no reason! With the advice he offers ranging between flowering plants and fruit and vegetables, his wisdom is suitable for all gardeners; those who want vibrant colour, and those who look for self-sufficiency, too.

Pearson says it isn’t too early to start planting, first of all. In fact, it is the perfect to time to divide perennials, so aim to get all bare roots in their final positions by the end of March. Secondly, it is advised to begin sowing at this point. I, for one, was slightly taken aback upon reading this particular piece of advice, as even I know that soil needs to be 6°C for sowing. However, something this basic wouldn’t catch Dan Pearson out! He points this out, but sowing can occur under cover in mild spells.

Thirdly, now is a perfect time to clear up your garden in terms of old growths. Pearson says to be careful in doing this, avoiding new bulbs that are starting to show, cutting the old close to the base. To go hand-in-hand with this, a mulch should be applied to keep the soil moist. This will really benefit your garden later on in the year. Next, another “Spring Cleaning” job is recommended, by pruning roses. Pearson says to remove the weak and unhealthy growth by taking it as close to the base as possible.

The last two tips Mr Pearson offers you are relating to the growth of two foodstuffs. These two often get wrongly classified as a fruit or vegetable! The first is actually neither; Dan recommended chitted potatoes are ready to be planted at the end of March, and potatoes are actually tubers. Rhubarb, a plant that actually classified as a vegetable, should be “forced” this month. You can read the full article here; this is recommended actually, there’s a lot more expertise from that author than this one! My forte isn’t gardening, but I love learning new things, I can only get better!

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