Keep Your Home Green, Here’s How To Do It
This is a difficult time, one in which we all have to follow guidelines to keep ourselves and others safe, as the COVID-19 quarantine has us all marooned at home looking for something to do other than watch television. Fortunately, for those with gardens and lawns to tend to, this time of year there is plenty to do. Just a little attention right now will pay off down the road when, hopefully soon, the social distancing restrictions are relaxed.
Spring is the best time to move certain perennials as many of them are just emerging, so rearranging them now in the garden puts very little stress on the plants. Summer or fall-flowering perennials like daylilies or bee balm should do well with a move or division now, but hold off on any spring-flowering plants like peonies, tulips or daffodils.
Prune Early Blooming Shrubs
The general rule is that for many plants pruning after they bloom is the best time. For shrubs like azaleas and lilacs, it gives the shrub a chance to grow and recover. This action gives them the best opportunity to bloom again in full next spring, most often with even more blooms.
The mild winter that most experienced this year gave weeds a head start, so now is an excellent time to get into those flower beds and get ahead of the coming barrage of weeds that are sure to come. With all this time, planning to do it now can keep the more aggressive weeds from taking hold.
It is also a good time to cut the edges around the beds to keep the grass from invading the plant space. The soft ground should make the cuts easier than waiting for warmer, dryer months to harden the soil.
Now is also an excellent time to clean out any vegetable beds that are in the plans, clearing away the old, dead plants from last fall. Using a garden tiller, incorporate an appropriate fertilizer of soil supplement to get the chemical balance that best suits the plants that are planned.
Apply Lawn Fertilizer
The early spring weather is perfect for putting down fresh grass seed on bare patches and the application of early-season starter fertilizer. Be sure not to use a weed-and-feed product at the same time as when seeding, as the chemicals are a pre-emergent and will impede the growth of the new seed. Weed control is best held off until mid-May after the seed has started to grow. Many garden centers have easy to follow programs for fertilizing lawns, with recommended times to apply each treatment. Be sure not to over-fertilize as it can burn the lawn and create the need to start all over again. You can even turn the lawn into a mini-golf course and teach your kids how to grip a golf club. Bermudagrass makes an excellent lawn for your home.
While you are fertilizing your lawn, make sure your trees and shrubs get the proper fertilization to grow to their potential and resist harmful insects and diseases. You can call a tree care professional to provide the right fertilization for your trees and shrubs.
Startup an Herb Garden
If working indoors is the preference, certain herbs grow easily and quickly inside, mainly mint and chives. First, find a sunny and warm location and fill a well-drained container with potting soil. Focus on the roots when watering, but don’t overwater the herbs and drown their very simple root systems.
Pruning herbs is necessary for continued growth but be sure to prune the leaves at the bottom and not the top. The big leaves on the bottom serve as a sturdy base, so remove just the end 1-2 inches of the plant’s stem. The exposed end will split and grow into two separate branches creating a bushier plant with more foliage. Be sure never to prune away more than one-third of the plant at any time.
Pruning can be a difficult and even dangerous job, especially if you have tall trees that need to be pruned. Professional arborists can provide effective tree pruning for your trees and shrubs that will benefit the appearance and health of your plants.
Rethink the Indoor Plants
Greening up one’s home is increasingly popular among new and experienced gardeners, and for everyone stuck inside, it is a great way to bring the outdoors in. Incorporate those plants along with an indoor putting green to give the feel of the course in the living room. Be sure to analyze the environmental conditions of the area, making sure the sunlight levels are optimal.
Grow lights feature a full spectrum of light that plants need should space be limited on sunlight and LED lights to offer a very efficient, long-lasting option to bring in the light.