It is always exciting in the spring as our landscapes come back to life after a long cold winter. We are all ready to get outdoors and your plants are ready to grow and bloom for the season. However they do need some attention. It’s not difficult or too time consuming when you know what to do and when.
Working in your landscape beds in the spring is important but there are a few rules. Not that it has been a problem lately, but if it does become wet it’s best to not walk in the beds. The wet soils may compact which reduces water retention and oxygen in the soil. If you can walk in the beds without sinking you are good to go. Always use sharp pruners when pruning your shrubs. Take time to sharpen the blades yourself or take them to a professional tool sharpener in the area.
The first step in cleaning up the beds is to remove any leaves that have fallen or blown in during the winter. Next remove any dead or broken branches from your landscape plantings. This goes for the woody plants, deciduous shrubs, evergreens and the like. We will talk about pruning specific shrubs in another “Tips” segment. Cutting the perennials off is part of the spring cleanup process. Most perennials like Mums, Asters, Salvia and the like can be cut off to the ground. Some perennials that you may have like Iris or Daylilies may have some green foliage hanging on from last year. First trim off the dead foliage, then trim any foliage that has spots on or that are damaged in some way. It is best to remove last season’s dead stems and foliage on your perennials before the new growth is three inches tall.
The next step will be to apply a new layer of mulch. The amount you need will depend on how much you have remaining from last season. Pull back some mulch to see how thick of layer remains. You need to maintain a two to three inch layer to effectively keep weeds from coming up. Adding mulch each year is not uncommon. After mulching an application of a pre-emergent can be applied to seal the deal so to speak and prevent weeds from coming up in your beds. Remember to thoroughly water after applying a pre-emergent herbicide.
If you have additional questions about getting your landscaping off to a good start this spring call the professionals at Landscape Consultants LLC, they will be glad to answer any questions you might have.