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How-To Guide to Early Spring Planting

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Are you as excited as we are to get back in the garden now that colder days are hopefully behind us? Planting in early Spring not only satisfies the gardening itch but can lead to a bountiful harvest throughout the entire growing season. When is the right time to plant, and which vegetables should be planted? What should be done to prepare the soil? How can the plants stay protected? Read on to answer these questions and more in our “Guide to Early Spring Planting”:

Spring Veggies

As the soil begins to warm, Spring is a great time to replant your vegetable garden or start a new one. Semi-hardy crops such as beets, carrots, potatoes, swiss chard and parsnips are perfect to start with as they grow underground and are less susceptible to frost. These plants also have a longer growing period so getting them in early means you get to incorporate them in your dishes sooner and enjoy them all summer.

More tender veggies, such as beans and corn, can also be planted around the time of the last frost but require extra care to survive colder nighttime temperatures.

Trees, Shrubs, Perennials, Early Annuals

Other plants such as trees, shrubs, perennials, and early annuals can begin to enter your garden as well as long as the soil conditions are right. Spring rains can leave the soil too moist for planting and trying to plant before the soil has dried can compromise the structure. As soil conditions vary from yard to yard depending on rainfall and shade, be sure to test your own soil before putting in your new plants.

Our nursery is fully stocked with annual and perennial blooms as well as plants, shrubs, and trees.  Work with one of our seasoned professionals to find the combinations that meet your needs. 

Fertilize

Whether using processed or organic fertilizer, it contains essential nutrients to improve root health and promote growth. Vegetables require additional fertilizer throughout the growing season as they benefit from a Nitrogen boost once they have begun to sprout.

You may also choose to use a granular or liquid fertilizer. When applying liquid fertilizer, however, do not plant immediately as it needs time to be absorbed into the soil.

Prune

Pruning while plants are dormant in early spring is a great chore for getting back in the garden. For trees and shrubs that are yet to bloom, it is easier to spot dead, damaged, or diseased wood. Removing these branches from your plants stops the problem from spreading and allows them to heal or regrow. This can be done at home with basic pruners or shears, or for taller trees and heavy branches contact our landscaping experts.

Be careful not to prune new buds before bloom especially on Magnolias and Lilacs as this prevents your beautiful flowers from flourishing.

Protect

Once you’ve prepared your soil and decided to what to plant in early spring, it is important to take measures to protect your garden from unexpected frosts and cold nights.

  1. Water– acts as a natural insulator in the cells of the plants
  2. Mulch– a 2–3-inch protective layer of mulch protects the soil from becoming too moist and acts as an additional buffer from the cold
  3. Cover– cover tender plants with a frost cloth, burlaps, or tarp at night, but be sure to remove during the day so the plants receive necessary sunlight and warmth

Hopefully you are excited about getting back out in the garden. Use the tips in this guide or contact our garden experts to make this growing season a success. Happy Spring! 

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