Spring Is Officially Here: Get Ready to Garden

On your mark, get set, garden!


Colorful Tulips

In April, the tulip seems to be the official flower of Virginia horse country. These stunning multicolor tulips graced the downtown beds in picturesque Middleburg, Virginia.

Hooray – it’s the first day of spring! If your region is anything like mine, the unseasonably warm weather might have you itching to get some plants in the ground. And if you’re in other regions, you might have been walloped by unexpected snow!

Where I sit, I know that while these high temps have almost tricked me into believing it’s really the first day of summer, I’m not past the danger of frost just yet. That’s okay, though – the beautiful weather is a perfect opportunity for me to get into my garage and clean up my gardening supplies. Are you with me?

  • Take stock. When months have passed since your last gardening session it can be easy to forget exactly which items you’ve already got, which ones you need…and which are sorely in need of replacing (like those gloves with the hole in the finger…). Before you head to the nursery, pull everything out from wherever it’s been all winter and take stock of your inventory, making a note of anything that’s missing. Not sure what tools you need to get started? Check out this list of essential gardening tools.
  • Get your supplies in order. Be honest: Did you take the time to clean up your gardening tools last fall…or did you toss that dirty spade in a bucket and then forget all about it? (Guilty…) Now’s a great time to get those supplies up to speed for spring. Clean and sterilize planters, pots and trays – depending on the material, you may want to treat or stain your pots and planters. Get tools in shape by cleaning, oiling, and/or sharpening them.
  • Organize your garage or shed. It’ll be so much easier – not to mention more relaxing! – to tend to your garden when you know exactly where everything is and can get to your tools and supplies with ease. Simple metal shelves or cabinets will do, though it may be worthwhile to invest in a structure especially made for garden storage. I’ve got my eye on the series of GarageWorks garden organization systems, which have a place for everything from peat moss to trowels.
  • Start planning. You may not be able to put plants in the ground yet, but you can start thinking about what you’d like to plant – and where you’d like the plants to go. Peruse and purchase seeds from a catalog, or pay a visit to a local nursery and ask for advice. Hoping to get a jump-start on the season? Consider starting seedlings on a sunny windowsill.

Pretty soon it’ll really be time to dig in and get dirty. I know when that day comes, I’ll be happy to have all my supplies organized and ready!

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Plant Minor Bulbs for Spring

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Start cultivating your garden and landscape from the moment that first spring flower shows off its gorgeous bloom.

Timing Spring Bulb Planting

Spring-flowering bulbs need to be planted in fall in order to bloom come show time. The bulbs need a certain amount of time to get established before winter's freezing weather sets in, and they need enough time exposed to cool soil temperatures to be properly chilled. 

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