March is the month that we, gardeners, have been looking forward to. For some of us, it has been a long, boring winter. March means that hibernation is finally over and we can spend more time outside.
Just like with meteorology, the green industry looks at the first of March as the beginning of spring – even though spring is not officially here until Tuesday, March 20.
“The glory of gardening: hands in the dirt, head in the sun, heart with nature”
To get spring off on the right foot you are invited to attend COFFEE WITH DOUG this coming Saturday, March 3, at 10:00. It is free to attend. No registration is required. Just come on out and attend this very unique, educational event. Mr. Mike Likens, Chesterfield County Extension agent, is my guest. Together we will attempt to answer all of your gardening questions. Do your plants have winter damage? We can help!!! Bring us clippings and/or pictures and we can discuss a game plan to get your plants back into shape for the upcoming spring growing season. In addition to Mike and me, we will have some Chesterfield Master Gardeners here conducting a plant clinic to help with all types of gardening questions.
We were blessed with some good rainfall in February that we certainly needed. So, Mother Nature wants us to get outside this month and do some needed gardening work without having to fear things being too dry.
Here are some other very important things to do in March:
- Early March is a good time to prune evergreens, such as boxwoods, hollies, hedges before new growth appears. This will allow the plants to fill out properly for the coming year. Be sure to prune out any dead wood.
- Now is a good time to give your plants some needed plant food. I love recommending the Espoma products. Espoma Holly-tone, Plant-tone, and Garden-tone are all excellent food for our plants this time of year.
- Before our forsythia shrubs finish blooming you need to put down the pre-emergent crabgrass preventer. One product, Espoma Organic Weed Preventer with Corn Gluten is an excellent organic product to use to keep crabgrass from growing. How it works is that it keeps the sprouted weeds from generating any root system.
- It is still technically winter and we can still have a late cold snap. So, don’t rush to remove any covering to your perennials beds. Remove this covering once the plants show signs of new growth.
- March is a good month to get started in your vegetable garden. Now is the time to be planting cool season leafy vegetables such as lettuce, spinach, kale, broccoli, cabbage, and other leafy vegetables. These cool-season vegetables grow well in cooler soil temperatures and cooler air temperatures that we can experience in March. If you don’t have a garden plot, then consider planting vegetables in raised gardens beds or containers that can be used on decks, porches, and balconies. If you go this route then just be sure you have plenty of direct sunlight for these vegetables.