Gardening Tips and Tricks

Getting Your Garden Ready For Spring!

Spring in the Pacific Northwest is my favorite time of year.  I can hardly wait to get out in the garden and smell the dirt.  It may sound odd to some but, the die hard gardeners know what I mean.   All winter long we stare longingly out the window, counting down the days when we can hold handfuls of earthworms and play slug toss.  Yes, it is almost time but, are you ready?  Well,  if not here are some great ideas to get you into the garden groove.

First and foremost lets talk about soil.  If you covered your beds with straw or any other organic matter good for you.  If not get out in the garden today and do it!  There are two reasons to make sure this gets done. The first one is that because of the amount of rain we get in the Pacific Northwest your garden has lost valuable nutrients and soil structure having been exposed to all the elements. So,  yes it is feeling naked and vulnerable.  Never good!  Two spring is coming and you will end up being in weed hell.  We have all been their don’t deny it.

This is a perfect time of year to tackle your greenhouse.  Most gardeners I know get tired at the end of fall and ignore their greenhouses.  This can lead to an almost terrifying experience if left too long.  I have been know to do this on occasion. (my husband would say more.)

Here is what to do: Gut everything not bolted down.  I know it sounds like a lot of work but, trust me when done right it is less work later.  You then need to get a bucket of vinegar water (hot) and a spray bottle as well.  Now scrub and spray like there is no tomorrow.  This is very important for the health of your plants.  Tons of diseases can be lurking in this confined area and you won’t know about them until your plants wind up sick.

My last but not least tip is do not jump the gun. (or the hoe) Gardening in the northwest is a wet and wild adventure. And due to the rainfall we receive our soil can remain soaked for quite sometime.  If you start digging to soon this will compact your dirt and make it hard for the roots of plants to receive oxygen.  Also, by planting to early your seeds will most likely rot and your money is wasted.

Here is a rule of thumb I go by.  Grab a handful of dirt squeeze: If it is wet and stays completely together (tight) Do not plant! If it breaks into pieces once you let go it is planting time!  Go grab your seeds and thank mother earth for making your day!

I hope these tips have helped and inspired you to get out in your garden and make some magic.

Happy Planting and Growing!

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