26 February 2008
Lurching Toward Spring
Lurching Toward Spring, in my book, is this series of warm days that make plants optimistic and break ground, followed by 25-degree nights that shock them back into realilty. Jump back, it is not spring yet.
Most days that go above 55-degrees you will find me outside doing something, though not always much. If you can get outside this week with the temperatures going up to 60-F on Thursday, here are a few things to do.
Remove winter cover from shrubs, bulbs and beds.
Plant dormant shrubs and trees. Divide and re-plant day lilies.
Feed trees in 2-inch deep holes around the drip line.
Mulch trees and shrubs with manure for spring growth.
Fertilize shrubs and evergreens now. Use evergreen or azalea type food for evergreens.
Water in dry fertilizers.
Prune summer flowering shrubs now but not spring flowering ones. Remove the larger, center stems and branches, dead stuff, broken limbs, etc. Clean out small branches that prevent sun from reaching the roots.
Prune back your honeysuckle, cross vine, etc.
Feed but do not prune crape myrtle.
Spray fruit trees with dormant oil fruit spray.
Start dividing perennials.
Water the plants stored in the basement or garage to get them ready for spring warm weather.
Keep summer bulbs dry and in the dark at under 50-degrees.
Start seeds. Park Seed has obligingly put their 2006 revised book, "Success With Seed" on the Internet. Just as each seed has its own pages in the book, those pages are reproduced on the web. Check to see how to plant.
Tom Clothier has a website dedicated to seed germination information.
Thompson and Morgan printed a seed germination book years ago. Since it is out of print, the database is reprinted at Backyard Gardener.
Plant rhubarb and asparagus, berries and grapes.
Till the vegetable garden.
Photo: Edamame crop last August. I'll plant them again despite the rabbit hassles of last year.