Sunday, March 15, 2009

Saint Patric's Day Clean-up.

Spring is in the air, St Patric's day will soon be here.
In the world of gardening in Colorado's Front Range the Green Holiday marks the start of the yard work season. Mid March is the perfect time for some essential maintenance for your yard and garden such as cutting back perennials and grasses left for winter interest, raking up the wood mulch and the neighbors leaves that have accumulated over he winter, applying pre-emergent herbicide to planting beds, freshen up wood mulch and give everything a good wash and soaking.

First, cutting back and perennials and grasses that were left for winter interest. Some examples would be Autumn Joy Sedums, Rudbeckia, Feather Reed Grass, Pampas Grass, Iris, etc. These are examples of some of the great plants that will give your yard great appeal over the dry winter months.

Next, raking and cleaning up the yard in general. In Colorado wind is a regular visitor and with it brings, (and moves) all of the wood mulch and leaves from your own house and all of your neighbors and re distributes the wealth all over the yards.

After that, it may be time to apply a pre-emergent herbicide. Pre-emergent herbicides will keep ANY plant from germinating. This can be a life saver if you are battling weeds around in your planting beds. It is generally safe to use around shrubs and trees, use with caution in perennial and annual beds, and DO NOT use near bulbs. In Colorado the timing is wrong for lawn weed control such as annual grasses or crab grass.

Freshen up mulch beds. Now is the time to replace the much that was redistributed over the winter. Remember that I recommend that wood mulch be placed directly on the soil, as weed fabric will provide a sooth surface for the mulch to slide on. To be effective wood mulch needs to be 3-4" thick to prevent the weeds. To Recap apply pre-emergent on top of existing wood mulch, then add replacement much to a total depth of 3-4".

Lastly; the lawn, trees, shrubs, patios, etc., will benefit from a good rise and soaking. Some years mother nature will help with this but 2009 does not seem to be one of those years.

So BEFORE you indulge in the second green beer, enjoy the crisp spring air and get out in to the yard and get a jump on the yard maintenance, your efforts will pay great dividend's when you can spent you time planting instead of weeding and maintaining.