Getting Your Landscape Ready For Spring

Getting Your Landscape Ready For Spring

A great time of year to start the spring clean-up in your landscape is mid-March. At this time, plants have made it through most of winter, but because of soil temperatures, have not come out of dormancy. It is by far, easier and cost effective to cut back all the dried foliage on a plant at this time, than it is to pick through the emerging new leaves later. Begin the clean-up process with cutting back the parts of the plants that are brown and dried up. This can be the tips, spent flowers from last season, or the entire plant, as is the case with most perennials and grasses. Removed foliage can be easily bagged and hauled away, or composted for future use. Either way, do not leave plant debris on the ground, as this can harbor insects and disease.

Get your landscape ready for spring. Shade planting.

Pink Turtle blooming in the landscape.

After removing the bulk of the leaves and debris, selectively prune back those shrubs that perform better with some pruning. A good rule of thumb is to: prune spring-flowering shrubs after they have finished blooming. Next a light shaping or a heavy pruning may be necessary to keep the plant looking full. Start by removing older, diseased or dying wood. Most plants are forgiving, but if in doubt, contact Breaking Ground for a recommendation.

Natural Edge
Natural edges can be re-cut at this time. This will keep any unwanted grass from creeping into the landscaping.

Get your landscape ready for spring. Zinnia in landscape bed.

Annual landscaping bed.

Invest in a good quality weed pre-emergent to cut down on weed seed germination. It is critical to apply pre-emergent prior to the soil temperature reaching 60 degrees (around April 1st). After applying, water in, if required, to activate.

Decide if you have an adequate layer of mulch to retain moisture for the plants, suppress weed growth, and keep the soil from eroding. A 2-4 inch layer is all that is needed to provide maximum benefit to the landscape.

Finally, fertilize all plants with a good quality fertilizer. Breaking Ground recommends applying a slow release plant food in the spring. A slow release fertilizer is a balanced fertilizer that releases nutrients consistently to the plants every time it rains or when watered.

Get your landscape ready for spring with Annual landscaped beds.

Colorful Zinnia landscape plantings.