Spring is well on it’s way. Well, for most people. Third winter is coming for Winnipeg, but that’s nothing new. Spring has different timings all over the world; some, are complaining about the ‘chilly’ days and rain, while others are still getting snow. No matter when your spring starts, you can be sure that these tips will help you get a jump-start on summer and make your yard beautiful. These also can be done when it slowly starts to thaw out (gutter check) to when the sun is shining and summer is just around the bend. If you’re like me and can’t wait to get outside and play in the dirt, starting small feels so good.
If your yard looks like mine, you’ve just gained free topsoil from the farmer next door via the harsh winter winds. Yep, my yard is covered in dirt. Which, isn’t a terrible thing – I can always use more dirt! Clean up the yard, picking up any debris that winter may have decided to throw your way and rake the lawn. I like to go around and pick up the large fallen branches in my ‘forest’ of trees, making sure there’s room for little leaves, buds and smaller saplings to grow. It makes for a killer work-out and gives me a reason to be out and about even though it’s still chilly. The larger logs? I leave those to decay.
Gross. There are tons of leaves and mud and dirt and who-knows-what in the gutters. If you’ve done them in the late fall, you might be clean to go. But, if you live anywhere where dirt can be kicked up and blown around, you’ll most likely have a gutter full of mud. Get them ready for those rain barrels by cleaning them out and making them shine.
If frost is gone, get those rain barrels out! Last year, we saw a dry summer and the rain barrels, what little they captured, helped out a lot. We have 3 on our property and a
retention pond, making sure that we rarely use our house water.
Plant Those Trees
Most trees are better planted in the cooler spring months, along with roses and other shrubs, especially bare-root shrubs. Get a jump start on healthy trees, roses, and shrubs, by planting them once the frost is gone and the months are still reasonably cool.
Trim any evergreens that need trimming for aesthetic or safety issues. You can also prune your fruit trees now if you didn’t do it in the late fall clean-up.
Start pulling weeds. Yes, it’s not even summer and I’ve got you digging up weeds. But, get the ones who happened to make it through your fall clean-up and winter months early, before they take over your garden. You can also take the time to edge garden beds now instead of worrying about it when you’re ready to plant and lay down any newspaper, mulch, or straw to suffocate any weeds that may be growing. Sorry to say, some will still poke their heads through your barriers.
Light it Up
Just for fun, and because cleaning be a bore, this is the time to bring out your solar lights and bring a little sparkle and magic to your yard. It’s also the easiest time to wrap those rope lights around tree trunks and through branches before the leaves get in your way.