Our gardens don’t get as much attention during the winter as they do in the warmer months, and spring is the right time to start preparing your garden for the growing season.
Beyond using an electric grass trimmer to prune your perennials and larger plants, you’ll want to check up on your garden tools to ensure you’re ready to take on the growing season. Ensure your small tools like trowels and rakes are in good shape, as well as larger ones like your electric lawn mower or wheelbarrow, are ready to go before you begin planting.
The projects you finish at this time can help your plants achieve more growth later on, so it’s important to start thinking about them early in the year. These are some of the gardening tasks you should prioritize in the early spring and summer.
Add Lime to Acidic Soil
Soil with a low pH can cause a number of problems for your garden, and adding lime to acidic soil will make it more alkaline and more conducive to growth. We recommend using lime on soil with a pH anywhere below about 6.
It takes time for new lime to have an impact on plants, so we recommend adding it to your soil at least a few weeks before you plan on planting. You should cover any soil that contains recently added lime with a plastic tarp during heavy rains to retain as much of the lime as possible.
Repair Fences and Trellises
It’s easier to fix these structures using your favorite multi tool and oscillating tool blades during the spring than at any other time o f the year, as there won’t be as many roots or as much growth to obstruct your work. That said, we recommend waiting until the end of spring to set new fence posts, as spring rains can raise the water table and make this job much more difficult than it needs to be. If a brand new, beautiful feature piece is what your looking vs. the traditional wooden or chain link fences, take a look at the unique Green Living Fences to do the job.
Remove Debris and Dead Growth
Raking your lawn isn’t the most enjoyable gardening project, but removing these obstructions will promote grass growth and prepare your garden for the summer. This is also the time to re-seed any bare patches you notice and apply any non-toxic herbicide you use in your garden.
Look Out for Slugs
Slugs are annoying garden pests that can cause significant damage to seedlings if left unchecked, and they often begin to come out during spring rains. Make sure to check regularly for slug damage.
If you’re having trouble with slugs, you can take more steps to keep them out of your garden. Check out these natural methods for ideas to get rid of slugs—many of them are possible with common household items.
Once your soil no longer contains any ice crystals, you should be able to begin planting seeds for your earliest crops! Some of the most common plants that should be planted early in the spring include lettuce, spinach, and peas.
Planting a range of crops with a variety of maturation dates will allow you to continue harvesting throughout the summer and fall. Make sure to cover any seedlings during hard frosts, which can cause irreversible damage to young plants.
Spring is the most exciting time of the year for gardeners, and these early-season tasks are even more rewarding when you consider the effect they’ll have on later growth. Start with these simple projects in the spring to prepare your garden for the summer and fall. Worx / Rockwell Tools
Guest Editor: Rae Steinbach
Rae is a graduate of Tufts University with a combined International Relations and Chinese degree. After spending time living and working abroad in China, she returned to NYC to pursue her career and continue curating quality content. Rae is passionate about travel, food, and writing, of course.