You may still be under several feet of snow, but you can at least start thinking about the growing season ahead. It’s time to order seeds and seed starting supplies, if you haven’t already, and get those little plants started. Use these dormant months to plan a new landscape design and make a materials list of what you’ll need to accomplish it. Keep reading those gardening books to sharpen your skills.
Last frost won’t come until late May or June, but seeds may be started now for cool season crops like cabbage, kale, broccoli and Brussels sprouts. These may be transplanted outside in April or as soon as soil can be worked.
You can be growing herbs indoors under the same grow lights you use for your seed starting. Basil, thyme, oregano and rosemary may all be grown indoors for fresh flavors all winter.
If you want to try a cold frame this spring, order it now and construct it to be ready when your transplants are ready to go outside under glass several weeks before last frost.
Clean, oil and sharpen all your tools. Make sure your gas-powered implements are stored empty of gas, especially if there is ethanol in the gas.
Start seeds for hardy perennials such as blanket flower and rudbeckia. Start seeds for tender perennials and annuals.
If you can get to it, remove mulch from early bulbs so they can come up.
Cut back on feeding houseplants and don’t feed any that are dormant.
Trees and Shrubs
There can be sunny, windy days in March that can be really harmful to trees and shrubs, especially newly planted ones. Sunscald can cause tree bark to crack opening up the plant to disease. Wind and heaving from the freeze/thaw cycle can rip young saplings out of the ground.
Make sure new plantings are mulched heavily, staked and protected with protective sleeves or other trunk protection.
On mature trees, remove diseased or damaged wood as soon as you see it to keep it from falling on someone or something.
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