The long months of winter are beginning to get pretty old. We have seen devastating rains and flooding for many weeks. Most of us are ready for Spring when we can get out of the house . The Groundhog has predicted an early Spring so that is exciting. This time of year we cannot get out in the yard as much and work on the yard and Cary NC landscaping. However, beginning in February there are some things that we can begin doing to ensure we have a beautiful start to the warmer weather.
Our trees and shrubs will need continual care to protect them from the cold and icy weather. In addition to the normal routine you can also begin to do the following:
- Zones 7 and warmer can plant bare-root trees and shrubs, and zones 8 and higher can plant bare-root roses.
- Prune trees or shrubs that have been damaged by winter storms.
- Prune roses as soon as the buds begin to swell.
- If your roses are winterized, leave them covered until all danger of hard frost has passed.
- Continue to protect tender trees and shrubs before a freeze.
When it comes to our container gardens and annuals the following can begin:
- Zones 9 and warmer can plant spring annuals outdoors following the last frost.
- You can begin to plant poppy seeds. Do this by spreading the seeds right on top of the last snow of the season.
- Pansies will be getting ready to show off soon. Take the time to fertilize your winter-blooming pansies with a good fertilizer.
- Continue protecting tender container plants from freezing temperatures until the final frost. Also make certain you continue to water.
If you have made a survey of your yard and landscape you may see some new growth coming forth out of the ground. It is imperative that you take care of them until they are in full grown. The following can help us with this:
- Zones 8 and warmer can start planting ornamental grasses while Zones 9 and higher can plant summer-flowering bulbs and perennials outdoors.
- Prune or mow ornamental grasses if desired. This will help them grow back healthy and more manageable.
- Prune Group B and C clematis vines, but don’t prune Group A since they bloom early on buds produced at the end of last season.
- Look for early bulb sprouts as a sign of spring and continue to protect them.
- Check stored tender bulbs every two weeks, discarding any rotten ones. If they look withered, lightly mist the packing medium with water. This will help them be ready to plant when your zone is ready.
The actual lawn also needs continued care:
- Address growing weeds using a post-emergence herbicide. This time of year wild onions and other pesky weeds will begin to grow. Taking care of them now will help you in the spring and summer months.
- Apply pre-emergent crabgrass control when soil temperatures have reached 55° F for 4 or 5 consecutive days. Be certain to check the temperature carefully.
- Remember not to walk or drive on frozen grass. This can damage your grass and result in much more work to get it healthy again.
Be sure to check our next post for more winter tips!
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