It’s the first of March already and spring is definitely in the air over here in the Netherlands. As I sit at my desk now I can hear birds chirping away and getting busy collecting food and flirting with each other again… preparing for mating and hectic times ahead.
Talking about hectic times ahead… March is just the month in which you have to really start getting out into the garden and de-winter it.
I generally stick to the rule here to not do any drastic pruning and planting until after the 11th March. The all fear of sudden frost attack has disappeared.
It’s a brilliant time of the year to get out into the garden again and take in the aroma of a new spring with new life vibrating all over the place….
So go get out there and take a stroll through your garden or even balcony and make a to do list and use the one below to and pick the chores that fit your place.
Here are my March Gardening tips for to do’s:
■ Continue planting new trees,
hedges, climbers and roses.
■ Place orders for summer-flowering bulbs such as dahlias, canna and eucomis.
■ Sow peas, broad beans, parsnips and carrots.
■ Continue planting lily
■ Order onion sets, shallots and seed potatoes.
■ Cut back hedges before birds start to nest.
■ Prune large-flowered clematis.
■ Start to prune roses, removing dead, damaged or diseased stems.
■ Sow sweet peas.
■ Plant winter aconites and snowdrops ‘in the green’.
■ Keep off the grass during frosty weather.
■ Prune autumn-fruiting raspberries back to ground level.
■ Prune fruit trees, removing dead, damaged or diseased branches.
■ Keep feeding the birds.
■ Divide large clumps of hostas before their leaves start to grow. Dig the
clump up, then use a spade to slice your clump into several sections,
replanting them at their original level.
■ With so much fresh, tender growth around, slugs and snails are in their
element. Deal with them now before your plants disappear before your eyes.
■ Before your garden begins to break into growth, take a last look at its
winter profile. Now is the perfect time to add plants with winter interest,
such as berries or bark, for next year.
■ Get your plant supports in before your perennials start to grow, this way
your supports will be covered before your plants are performing at full tilt.
■ Plant lilies to fill in any border gaps, or in pots.
■ Feed all your fruit trees, canes and bushes with a sprinkling of sulphate of
■ Cover rhubarb with forcing buckets or jars to encourage long, tender stalks.
■ Prune back the stems of dogwoods, willows and buddleias to produce fresh new
■ Plant new hedges.
■ Feed hedges, trees and shrubs with a general-purpose fertiliser, then mulch
around their bases.
■ Rejuvenate congested
perennial herbs by dividing the clumps and replanting
■ Dig up parsnips and leeks and heel in until used to allow beds to be
■ Prepare seed beds in fine dry weather and cover with fleece to warm up
■ Clean out water butts: a bit of charcoal in the bottom will keep the water
■ Trim and tidy evergreen grasses and cut deciduous grass back to ground level
before growth starts
■ Prick out seedlings before true leaves develop
■ Sow tomatoes, peppers and aubergines from seed in a heated propagator.
■ Dig in over-wintered green manures in preparation for planting in a couple of
■ Plant potatoes under polythene for an early crop.
■ Start successional sowing of root and leaf vegetables.
■ Prepare the bed in the greenhouse for planting out tomatoes in April.
■ Cut back hardy fuchsias, lavatera, cotinus and Buddleja davidii to between
75cm and 1m.
■ Prune winter jasmine after flowering
■ Sow cut-and-come-again salads in pots under cover to protect them from the
■ Plant out rooted strawberry runners, removing most of the flowers – a heavy
crop in the first year will weaken the plant.
■ Sprout dahlia tubers in warmth for dividing.
■ Sow hardy annual flowers.
■ Plant gladiolus corms in well-drained soil.
Happy Gardening, Love C