Your Early Spring Lawn & Garden Checklist
The kids and dogs are muddy. Birds are going bonkers. The windows are open, and we’re really, finally believing it… Spring is here! The earliest days of the season of growth are an exciting time, as the ground begins to soften and the world comes back to life. We’re excited to get back outside, and back into the garden. It’s a perfect time to ease into the season, without doing too much too soon. Here’s our early spring garden checklist to get you back outdoors, and the outdoors back into shipshape (in a way that’s just right for this time of year).
Be Gentle on the Lawn
Late March and early April can vary from cold and frosty to downright balmy! On the nice days, take a look around the lawn to assess any winter damage. Gently rake matted patches, and clean up sticks and large debris. Early seeding and patch repair can begin as the weather warms, so stock up on the seed and lawn food you’ll need for starting the season. If you’re concerned about weeds in your lawn, a weed-preventing product works best when applied in the early spring. Applied before growth begins, it will prevent new weed seeds from germinating.
Get Garden Inspired
Peek the new growth of awakening perennials popping up everywhere. Say hello to the earliest blooms of the spring bulbs! Dream of the garden’s potential by starting seeds indoors. Pick up summer-blooming bulbs like dahlias and gladiolus, and add touches of seasonal colour with cold-hardy pansies. Stock up on seeds for the veggie patch. Remember to buy extra packets of direct-sown seeds like greens, carrots, beets and peas… you can continually sow them throughout the season for successive harvests!
Freshen Up the Entry
It feels good to toss the faded greenery that’s been on the porch since October, and to sweep away the sand and salt. Changing the seasons visually helps to lift your mood. New colours and textures help to shift your mindset to appreciate the little details appearing in the landscape! Brighten up high-traffic entry points with seasonal blooms, floral motifs, and pretty wreaths.
Clean Up – But Not Too Much
Go easy on the garden in the earliest part of the season. Snoozing pollinators are still taking refuge in the fallen foliage and light debris from last year’s plants. Right now is the ideal time to tidy broken limbs, prune the roses, and give some light shaping to evergreens. Trim small fruits like raspberries and blackberries, and prune apple trees for best growth and fruit. Dormant oil spray is approved for use in organic gardening practices. This helpful product combines horticultural oil and lime sulphur, and can be applied to fruit trees and roses. Dormant spray can to help smother overwintering pests, and treat and prevent fungal diseases like black spot.
Prep the Patio
Re-set shifted stones, clean and prepare planters, and take the patio furniture out of storage. Sweep or power-wash concrete surfaces, or think about new paint or stain on the deck. Inspect the barbeque, and get it cleaned up and ready to grill. Freshen up accessories like umbrellas, cushions or outdoor rugs. Early season patio sales will offer the best selection you’ll find all year. If you need new items or to shop for a new set, it’s best to shop early! Getting your lounge space set up now will maximize the amount of time you get to spend within it this year. For the ultimate season extension, stylish and portable outdoor heating solutions like patio heaters and fire tables add warmth on those chilly days.
Bring Back the Birds
The songbirds are back, bringing their sounds, colours, and movement to the landscape. Encourage them to hang around by supporting them with early food, places to shelter, and sources of water. If you already have bird feeders in your yard, give them a thorough cleaning and re-fill them with fresh food. Consider adding bird houses to your garden to give them places to safely nest or shelter. Add water sources like a bird bath, water feature, or fountain. Running water increases the number of bird species you’ll see in your landscape, and is really helpful for pollinators, too!