5 Things You Can Do Right Now to Get Ready for Spring

It may not feel like it now, but spring is right around the corner. If you want to be ready for those first few warm days, it’s time to start some planning. Use these 5 timely hints to prepare for spring:

1. Address Your Winter Pots

Empty winter pots and decide on your spring strategy: Remove the birch logs, pine boughs and fir branches from your containers and compost them, if possible. Add fresh soil. Spring plants are typically rather small so plan on purchasing and planting at least a dozen 4” in a 24” pot, 10 in a 20” pot, 8 in a 16” pot, etc. Here are just a few of the spring beauties that love spring weather: pansies, lettuce, ranunculus, potted bulbs, Lobularia, coral bells, and scabiosa.

2. Wake Up Those Beds

Do you want a zing of spring along a front walk, flower bed or around a mailbox? Planting pansies into a bed will give you a jolt of color that takes you through to June, when the pansies will get leggy. At that time you can switch to summer annuals like New Guinea Impatiens or Petunias. Count on planting pansies 4 to 6 inches apart. When in doubt, buy more than you need. You’ll always find a place for those extras!

3. Mull Over Your Mulch

Will your mulch need refreshing this year? A layer of mulch should be 3-4 inches deep, that’s perfect for limiting weed seeds and increasing moisture retention. If your mulch is over 6” deep you run the risk of starving hungry roots of moisture and nutrients.

4. Inspect Outdoor Furniture

Check your outdoor furniture for damage, dirt or fading. When the weather breaks, will you have a place to sit and enjoy it?  You may need new pieces and now is the time to shop for them. A fire pit is a fun way to extend the time you can spend outside without getting chilly.

5. Perk Up Outdoor Spaces

While raking and tidying, identify places that could use the perk-up of spring bulbs. These easy-to-plant bulbs will be planted in autumn for blooms the following spring. Why not use iScape to virtually “plant” bulbs now? You can mark the locations for fall planting with old golf tees and make a note to order and plant bulbs at the very end of the gardening season.