It’s March… the daffodils are out, lambs are bouncing around the fields and Spring is within reach! Congratulations to those of you that haven’t given in to the temptation of sowing seeds too early, it’s warmed up a little bit but it’s still cold and windy out there. Be warned of frosts that can still wipe out little seedlings, the last frost date here in the UK is in May so keep that in mind.
For me however, March is when the growing year really gets into full swing. It’s the time when you can shake off those Winter cobwebs and get started in the garden, it’s a busy time of the year with plenty of seeds that need sowing and jobs that needs ticking off the list! Sp here are just a few things that you can be getting up too in March…
Seeds to sow inside:
- Peas (in guttering)
- Herbs such as Basil, Chives, Parsley, Fennel and Coriander
Seeds to sow under cloches:
- Broad Beans
- Brussel Sprouts
- Kohl rabi
- Swiss Chard
Things to plant outdoors (as long as the ground isn’t frozen or waterlogged):
- Jerusalem Artichoke
- Onion Sets
- Early Potatoes (we like to plant ours out on Good Friday)
- Place strawberry plants in the greenhouse in hanging baskets or place cloches over outdoor plants to get an early harvest.
- You can directly sow sweet peas outside.
- Plant out summer flowering bulbs like Gladioli, Anemones and Lilies.
- Plant out new shrubs and hardy perennials.
- Finish pruning perennial flowers, cutting back all previous years growth to make way for new shoots. Divide spreading clumps to prevent overcrowding and to help keep plants healthy.
- Take cuttings from Dahlias and Chrysanthemums.
- Leave daffodil foliage intact for at least six weeks after flowering to regenerate the bulbs which will produce more flowers next year.
- Start moving seedlings from the greenhouse to the cold frame to help acclimatise them to the weather.
- Mow lawns and trim edges of pathways and borders. Now is the perfect time to sow grass seed too.
- It’s not too late to spread well rotted manure to help add nutrients and improve the structure of the soil.
- Mulch compost or leaf mould around the base of plants to suppress weeds.
- Repair netting.
- Clean tools and sharpen secateurs.
- Build a compost bin.
- Put up bird houses, bee hotels and create a pond.
- Hoe bare soil on dry days to remove weeds.
- Force rhubarb by placing a bucket over the stems.