Last Updated on September 2, 2023 by a Friendly Gardener
Spring is in the air!
At long last, we can look forward to spring and the start of the gardening year. Surely it has to be the most exciting time for any gardener being optimistic for the coming seasons, and each has something to offer, and, surprise us! Gone are the dull dark days and with the sun gradually getting warmer, everything in the garden is waking up and throwing off the winter blues. Spring in the garden has three phases, early mid and late, and there’s something special to enjoy in each one. I’m particularly fond of phase one.
In spring I love having a bunch of daffodils in the house, and then I look out to see if I can spy any new bulbs springing up in the garden. Each morning I’ve wandered around my plot searching for the first signs of spring, new growth, new promises, and new excitement. If you’re anything like me, you’ll be wondering where to start, whether it’s tidying the shed, venturing into the greenhouse and hoping everything has survived the winter, and, not forgetting sorting the gardening tools.
Just yesterday while the sun was shining I decided to wrap up and get motivated in my greenhouse. I certainly enjoyed a grand tidy-up, sorting pots, ousting spiders, and checking that most things had survived the long winter. I then felt ready to start my gardening year.
It’s one of my main hobbies besides walking and writing, and although I don’t confess to knowing it all, I’m a fairly good gardener. I know most of the tricks and many of the Latin plant names, and like all gardeners, I have my favourite plants. I’m not a vegetable gardener, however, I do like to plant a few runner beans on canes. They’re so jolly and delicious to eat, and among the flowering plants, they’re so easy to grow.
My star performers
I find gardening irresistible and although I’ve very little room left for anything new, I do sneak into garden centres and buy yet another plant. I’ve many favourites, however, roses and clematis are my absolute passion. Each year I eagerly check that they’re pruned and fed and ready to display in full glory. To date, I have 22 varieties of clematis, and I’m presently enjoying the winter variety in my driveway. It’s called Cirrhosa. (opposite) It’s one of several winter flowering clematis. It’s evergreen and has flowers during the winter and early spring. It’s been a real delight and I’m always sad when it’s finished flowering.
The jobs list
Greenhouse sorted, I then decided to make a checklist to work with according to the weather. To me, it’s March, so it’s time to get cracking and start with a few jobs listed below. As we all know, there’s always a lot to do in the garden and to me, it’s like keeping the home tidy and in order.
- Get on top of weeds. They’re every gardener’s nightmare, but they have to be controlled. As the weather warms, they’ll spring up everywhere, so be one step ahead!
- Be on your guard for any late frosts
- Check that tender plants are coping with the varying temperatures.
- Look after perennials and support them, and deadhead flowers
- Check lawns, do any repairs needed, and sow seed if required
- Feed plants and shrubs.
- Order summer-flowering bulbs and seeds
- Tidy up flower beds and borders
- Clean out and wash your greenhouse
- Sow seeds that need a longer season.
And if you think you’ve remembered all the gardening jobs, do remember to seek out and remove garden pests, and install water butts if you’ve not already got them to begin collecting water. I have three in my garden at strategic points as it’s a pain heaving watering cans from one end of the garden to the other.
What is cheerier than an array of spring bulbs? Besides having them in the house I enjoy having a garden full of different varieties. I had a new garden makeover last autumn and among other things, I planted 2,000 bulbs in my medium-sized plot. I wasn’t quite sure whether to stay with daffodils and tulips or a mix. In the end, I decided to simply mix the bags, and plant ad-hoc, and I’m delighted with the results. Besides my wonderful array, I’ve listed a few plants that you may find attractive if you’re planning your new spring garden.
Fragrant spring flowers
Make sure a few of these spring bloomers are close to areas you visit frequently so you can walk among them to enjoy what they have to offer.
Check out the ones listed below.
- Common lilac Syringa vulgaris
- Dianthus spp. and hybrids
- Hyacinth Hyacinthus orientalis
- Lily-of-the-valley Convallaria majalis
- Mock orange Philadelphus spp. and hybrids
- Peony Paeonia lactiflora
- Star magnolia Magnolia stellata
- Stock Matthiola incana
Bulbs that will spread in your spring garden
If you’re starting afresh with your garden project, and want an appealing spring show, then begin with just a few of these bulbs, and give them a sunny spot with good drainage. It won’t take long for you to enjoy a large patch of colour that will brighten your garden and your day.
A few suggestions are listed below:
Camassia quamash, Crocus Crocus spp. and hybrids, Daffodil Narcissus spp. and hybrids, Grape Hyacinth Muscari armeniacum, Grecian windflower Anemone Blanda
Whether it’s early, mid, or late spring, you can enjoy sprucing up exterior areas such as patios, walkways and decking with flowering containers. You can move them about as required and they will add colour and flowers for a few months too.
Without a doubt, spring is a truly uplifting time for gardeners. Whether it’s preparing your seeds, enjoying your bulbs or deciding which vegetables to grow, mulching, pruning or dividing plants, there’s a whole host of jobs on that never-ending jobs list!
So enjoy it all, even the dreaded weeding! And always remember to relax in the garden too, and enjoy your hard work.