How to Prep Your Garden for Spring

Early spring can feel like a game of garden roulette: sunny and warm one week, tempting you to transplant all those tomatoes you’d started inside, then wet and cold the next week, reminding you that frost isn’t entirely out of the picture.

If you’re itching to get outside but the unpredictable weather is reigning you in, there’s still plenty you can do around the yard before (and aside from) sowing seeds or putting tender seedlings in the ground.

The name of the game in March is “clean-up,” and this checklist will walk you through all the sometimes forgotten tasks to help you tune-up your garden for prime planting season.

While you wait for the mud to drain and dry in your planting beds, start sprucing up the rest of your yard.

Tidy Up the Yard

Prune perennial plants and fruit trees. Any perennials (including ornamental grasses) that didn’t die back or weren’t cut back over winter should be trimmed to allow for new growth. Prune and shape unwieldy plants to control their size and spread.

Once the ground is thawed and the soil starts to look like soft, crumbly earth (and not heavy, sodden mud), start grooming your garden beds to bring them back to life.

Prep the Beds for Planting

Rake off old mulch. Add the mulch to the compost heap and pull up any vegetables left over from your winter crop. Remove rocks, sticks, and weeds so the beds are clear of all debris.

Early spring is the ideal time to assess the overall condition of your tools, especially those that have been left outside.

Take Stock of Your Tools

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