February 24, 2020 As the harsh winter ends and summer is around the corner, it’s about time for all of our green-thumbed community to bust out the mulch and gloves to prepare your garden for spring! Here are some tips for both the newbie gardener and the experienced individual who just needs a little refreshing. Weeding Once the ground starts to thaw and the sun comes out you will likely notice some weeds that have sprouted. Before starting anything else, it is important to clear the area you are planting from debris and young weeds. Tip: Pull weeds when they are immature and make sure to get the root out. The best time to weed is when the soil is warm and moist- and prevent new weeds by turning the soil and planting in the same spot so new ones aren’t able to sprout. Refresh your soil After the icy winter, prepare your garden beds and planting grounds by turning or tilling the soil with a sharp spade. Try to aim for a little over a foot in depth to get the composted mulch and leaves. Doing a soil test to see what chemical balance your soil is at and what measures you need to take to balance it. Try this soil tester that you can purchase online, or reach out to your local arborist for expert evaluation and guiding. Regulate temperatures Soil temperature is more important than air temperature for planting new seeds. Keep track of the weather patterns in your area to plan the best time to seed your garden. With that said, there are a few things you can do to control the temperature artificially: Plant in easily movable containers for cold nights Build a cold frame Invest in a Hotbed Cover the area in black plastic or other covers to warm the soil with solar energy Pruning Right before the growth period, it’s very important to trim away dead branches and make room for new ones. Be careful not to over prune your plants in this delicate time of recovery. Every plant species and type is different, so look online for your specific plant and its pruning requirements. You can also contact an arborist for advice. Fertilizer and Mulch One of the first things you should do to prepare your garden is to add fertilizer before spring comes into full bloom. Fertilizer combined with a good pre-emergent to prevent crabgrass can enrich your soil and prep for affective growth. Mulch is also a great way to prevent weeds and make your soil more solid. However, don’t apply mulch until your seedlings are strong enough – which can be possible if you grow them indoors or in containers. Plan your yearly tree and shrub care with a certified arborist, who can give you expert advice and care that you can’t get anywhere else. Especially when dealing with local species of plants and weather conditions, it is important to have an in-person evaluation of the care you need for your plants. Contact Front Range Arborists today for a free estimate.