Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow, and how. These last six weeks of winter are kicked up a storm of snow and sleet across the state. Seems like an odd time to be thinking about spring yard clean-up, and yet now is the time to make yard plans.
COVID-19 has changed what people are looking for in a home, and one thing that has become very important is a beautiful back yard with an outdoor living space.
A lush yard with a green velvet carpet of grass and a bountiful harvest of spring flowers provides what realtors and architects call “curb appeal.” Paying attention to the outside of your home adds value.
While you are mapping out your landscaping and hardscaping, spend some time getting your yard and grass into better shape. As soon as the snow is gone, it is time to start cleaning up the mess that winter has created.
Here are a few tips on how to get the clean-up started:
- Remove any debris. Winter storms bring down branches and twigs, get rid of these. Also, clear out dead plants and refuse that have built up. If you don’t have too much, these twigs and small branches are great to hold on to for starting bonfires in the Spring in a fire pit.
- Get the rake out of the garage and start purging dead leaves. Remove them from beds, patios, and other places where they have built up. Add them to your compost pile or start a new one. Layer them with newspaper like lasagna and by May they will be broken down into perfect compose for your flower beds.
- Fertilize your lawn. A good fertilizer program helps your lawn stay healthy and fights weeds. One of the most important things for grass is nitrogen. Keeping nitrogen-rich soil insures dense, thick, green grass. All fertilizing should take place before summer heat hits. If done later, it will cause grass to burn out. Growth of grass needs to occur before the heat, so the grass can go inactive to survive. For cooler climates, like here in Minnesota, spring and fall are the important times to fertilize.
- Now is the time to prune many trees and bushes. It is best to do it before the weather gets too warm, as pruning once a tree has started budding puts stress on the tree. Stress lowers fruit crops and flowering. Early flowering trees and bushes should be pruned after flowering.
- Plan beds. Helping beds to grow and look beautiful involves dethatching and power raking. After all debris is removed, the weak areas in a lawn and garden will appear. Edging and mulching adds a lot to a yard, especially along fence lines and next to patios.
- Time to mulch. Mulch around shrubs after the last snow to insure moisture is kept in the soil when temperatures soar. Make sure that mulch is no more than two inches high on flower beds and three inches around shrubs. There is no need to remove old mulch around trees and shrubs, just add what is necessary to get beds to appropriate levels. Mulch holds down weeds, keeps moisture in the soil, and keep the temperature moderate.
- Prepping for flowers and vegetables. Tilling and planting of early flowers and vegetables can take place in mid-March and early April. This is also the time to divide perennials, and to prepare soil for planting by mixing in fresh compost and nutrients.
It is hard to think about spring gardening with all the snow and cold, but now is the time to prep your yard for early plantings. Besides, working in the garden is a great way to relieve stress, and get some exercise. You can even get the kids some hands-on learning about plants and animals.
Planting a garden needs to take place after the last frost. The National Gardening Association online data base allows you to get an estimate of the last frost date in your area by zip code. This date can help you make your gardening plan. They also have a plant data base to help choose the right flowers for this area and soil type.
Let Steve Schroeder Services, LLC Help You Build a Beautiful Yard and Garden!
Stay inside while we at Steve Schroeder Services do the mulching, fertilizing, pruning, edging, power raking, and tilling for you. We will make sure that your yard is well cared for and ready for summer. Our fertilizer programs will insure it stays green all summer (of course, you do have to keep it watered). This is a stressful time, we can remove some of that stress by caring for your yard and garden so you can care for your family.
If you are not familiar with Steve Schroeder Services, LLC, know that Schroeder’s mission is, “To Keep Putting Service Back into Customer Service with the Utmost Quality and Care.”
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