For Fresh Color
Refresh container plantings with vibrant seasonal color like fragrant Wallflower and Hyacinths, beautiful Ranunculus, flouncy Anemones, and vivid spring flowering bulbs. Spruce up landscape plantings with early annual color like Primroses, Pansies, Violas, and spring flowering bulbs. Hellebores are a great perennial plant investment; they are evergreen, easy to care for, and in bloom before other plants wake up in the garden.
As new growth appears throughout the garden on perennials and shrubs, apply G&B Fertilizer to help support lush, vigorous growth, and be sure to protect them from slugs with Sluggo or Slug Magic. Divide Hosta and Daylily as they emerge; divide ornamental grasses if needed and cut back (if not done in fall).
For the Lawn
Apply Lilly Miller Moss Out or Bonide’s MossMax to control moss in lawns and landscape beds. Be careful around ornamentals when applying—do not spray or spread directly on them. You may even want to cover the delicate ones during application as a precaution, especially tender new buds and blooms.
Add lime to adjust pH, which allows fertilizer to be more easily taken up by the grass and makes acid-loving moss uncomfortable (do a pH test if unsure). Apply G&B Lawn Fertilizer after the first mowing of the season to support a lush carpet of grass. After March 15th, grass seed can be put down to patch and fill areas. Cover new seed with a fine layer of G&B Soil Building Conditioner (3 cubic feet covers 144 square feet at ¼ inch thick).
Prune abelia, pine, evergreen ferns, pyracantha, spiraea (summer-blooming), lavender, mimosa, rockrose, witchhazel, aucuba, twig dogwood, Lonicera nitida, beautyberry, bluebeard/carypoteris, and ornamental grasses this month. General rule of thumb: prune spring-flowering shrubs and trees after blossoms fade.
For the Edible Garden
Use soil testing kits to measure the nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, and pH levels of soil to plan for its needs for the coming growing season. Use a soil thermometer to check temperatures; it’s okay to start planting at 40-45 degrees (cool-season crops).
Amend the soil with G&B Soil Building Conditioner, Harvest Supreme, or Malibu Compost to enrich soils and improve quality. Plow or turn in your cover crops now and wait a few weeks before planting new crops.
Plant cold season crops like broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, kale, leeks, lettuce, onions (from seed or from sets), peas (snow, shelling, snap), radishes, spinach, and Swiss chard. Be sure to protect from slugs with Sluggo or Slug Magic. Plant perennial vegetables like artichokes, asparagus, and rhubarb to get a healthy vigorous root system started for the coming growing season. Sturdy perennial herbs like chives, lavender, rosemary, sage, and thyme can be planted now. Start tender crops like tomatoes, peppers, squash, and eggplant from seed indoors.
In the Garden Shed
Go through old chemicals and fertilizers. Properly dispose of anything that is old or ineffective. Many waste companies have select days when residential chemicals can be disposed of at their facility or for weekly pickup. Check with your local waste management company for details (or call Metro at 503.234.3000). Make a list of chemicals and fertilizers that are commonly used/need to be replenished.
Go through old seeds and dispose of those that are too old to germinate (seeds have a date on their package). Generally speaking, 1-2 years for large seeded plants like corn, beans, and squash, and up to 5 years for small seeded plants like lettuce, leeks, and grass seed.
Use Moss Out for roofs and walkways to clear moss around the home. This non-staining formula will kill moss without discoloring concrete.
Fertilize roses with Portland Rose Society 15-10-10, and feed raspberries and other cane berries with a slow release, organic fertilizer such as G&B Citrus & Fruit Tree Blend.
Just for Fun
Freshen up your indoor plants with a topdressing of worm castings or repot them completely if necessary. Take a few cuttings from vigorous, healthy plants and share them with friends once they have rooted.
Near the end of the month, sow some grass seed to grow indoors for Easter decorations; young grass shoots should be up within a week or so.