Early Spring Gardening Checklist

February is winding down and the first day of spring is JUST around the corner! If you're just as antsy as we are to get your hands into the soil, here are some tasks you can tackle right as spring rolls around.

Check & Restock Supplies

Most gardeners of all skill levels can identify with having an assortment of gardening tools, supplies, pots, fertilizers, and whatever else laying around. Now is the perfect time to take inventory and get organized! There's nothing worse than going to start a task just to realize you don't have the correct tools for the job or that the tools aren't up to par. Here's a quick list of items to check on before the season starts:

  • Gardening tools & supplies: Check the state of your pruners, snips, wheel barrows, gloves, mowers, trimmers, etc. Repair anything that needs repairing and replace anything that needs replacing.
  • Fertilizers: Make sure your go-to fertilizers are in good condition after being stored for the winter. March means it's time to feed your evergreens, hydrangeas, and roses and Barlow's recommends Espoma Organic fertilizers.
  • Disease & Pest Controls: it's always good to have all-purpose treatments on hand for your flowers, foliage, and edible plants. Some common garden headaches include: aphids, powdery & downy mildews, and fungal infections. Be sure to use organic treatments on all of your fruit and vegetable plants!
  • Soils, Amendments, & Mulch: great plants start with great soil! Start stocking up on everything you'll need for your 2024 plantings. A good compost or soil builder is great to add to your in-ground and raised beds before you begin planting. 

Spring Pruning

  • Take a stroll around your garden and see what's starting to pop up!
  • Now (late February - March) is the time to prune your roses and other shrubs that flower in the summer on new wood.
  • (Optional) You can trim back & clean up any herbaceous perennials that were left over the winter.

Spring Feeding

  • Late February - March is when you want to feed your evergreens and ornamental trees & shrubs!
    • Barlow's recommends Espoma Organic Holly-tone for your acid-loving plants like evergreens (except arborvitae and boxwoods), dogwoods, crape myrtles, camellias, and azaleas.
    • Arborvitae and boxwoods don't need as much acidity to thrive, so we recommend Espoma Organic Plant-tone for them.
  • You'll also want to mix in some good organic compost or soil builder to enrich your beds for the season. If you don't have your own compost at home, Bumper Crop Organic Soil Builder contains shellfish compost, mycorrhizae, and earthworm castings in an easy-to-manuever 2cu ft. bag. 
  • Adding an all-purpose garden fertilizer to your beds is also another way to add nutrients to your beds. Espoma's Organic Plant-tone is a good all-purpose granular fertilizer that can easily be mixed into the soil.

Seed Starting

  • Now is the time to get some seeds started! Summer flowers and vegetables can be germinated over the upcoming weeks.
  • Take a look at our Seed Starting Guide for more information on when to start specific crops.

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