I was just looking back at my March 2010 post and noticing how I said I love this time of year - still lots of time to dream of the new possibilities for the garden in the coming year, and just a little bit of excited anticipation starting to creep in. Well, this year it's different. I have big ideas and I can barely wait to get started! I thought you were supposed to get more patient as you get older...
We took the decrepid, rotten greenhouse down last March and the spot waited, empty, for the rest of the year.... My husband has promised to build the pergola/playhouse replacement this year but I can tell I am going to have to take the initiative in the planning department if this is going to get done. So this month I will be getting down to the nitty gritty details of the playhouse design. Actually, it's only fair since he doesn't really care what it looks like but I do. For me, designing a structure is not nearly as fun as planning a new front yard garden, but I will try to stay focused!
For the regular, yearly garden-related stuff, here's my March to-do list:
- Don't expect to do anything outside until at least April to avoid disappointment! We get the most snow in March. And then if we do get the odd chance to get out and tidy or prune, it will feel like a gift.
- Start fertilizing house plants with a half-strength water-soluble fertilizer.
- Start seeds when appropriate i.e. do not, I repeat, DO NOT start seeds too early! The average last frost date in Calgary is considered to be May 24 so count backwards from then to figure out when to start various seeds. Information about number of weeks before the last frost date will be on the package. I've also posted a useful table about when to start vegetable seeds in Calgary.
- This year I'll be starting verbena bonariensis, agastache, castor bean and cosmos seeds in early March and tomatoes in late March.
- Finish pruning dormant, late-blooming shrubs and trees.
- Raspberries can use a little tidying up now too if you haven't done so already. Old canes that have produced fruit should be removed and anything thinner than a pencil can also be cut down to the ground. Newer primacane varieties that produce fruit on first-year growth should all be cut down.
From the archives:
- for the record - first seeds planted for 2011
- seeds I've ordered for 2011
- winter ain't over till it's over!
- How to winter sow seeds from Urban Sustainable Living
- sowing seeds indoors from Urban Sustainable Living
- 10 Seed-starting tips from Fine Gardening magazine
- Seed-starting strategies from Vegetable Gardener magazine
- Estimating viability - how long do seeds last? from A Way to Garden
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