It’s that time of year

Published 12:22 pm Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

Finally, according to the calendar, as well as the weather, spring has arrived! Today, let’s give a little thought to planting time and to performing timely yard and garden tasks. An early start makes for lighter work later on.

Are you planning some raised beds, planting a few fruit trees or growing a regular garden? Do you know how you’re going to till the soil, plow the ground or fill the beds or containers? Are there leaves, limbs and trash to remove after windy weather and storms? Do you have the tools or do you plan to hire help? Where will you purchase trees, plants and seeds? Don’t forget the fertilizer!

The time for daydreaming has passed, and it’s planting time! Landscape contractors, gardeners and tree care professionals are usually already booked if you call asking about “can you come over this week and do such-and-such,” so keep that in mind if you need help for your projects.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Tree and shrub planting can be done most any time of the year, but April is known for being planting time for masses of people. And, certainly, the garden centers have stock ready to sell. If you plan to purchase from the ‘big box’ store, get what you want as soon as a shipment arrives—they aren’t known for taking good care of plants that have sat around on display for any extended period of time.

The homeowner may want a better-looking front yard. This is often something folks decide they want once the days warm up and they look around and begin to think about mowing, trimming or spraying for dandelions if they’re into having the greenest lawn. If the soil isn’t too soggy, go for it and begin revamping that front yard!

Raised beds for growing flowers, shrubs or edibles are a quick way to get going. Even a cubic yard of topsoil dumped into the yard equals an instant raised planting bed.

Fruiting trees and shrubs are in demand. Folks are buying them. It’s best to know what you’re planning to plant before you go on a shopping trip, otherwise, you’ll come home with things you don’t know where you’ll put them.

I know many readers plan to grow an actual garden this year. It may include corn and beans, but certainly, it’ll include some tomatoes. It takes a lot of space to grow melons and pumpkins, but lettuce, mustard, turnips, and radishes—not so much. Interplanting takes advantage of limited space. Planting climbing beans among the corn, sowing seeds of kale or radish between the hills of other plants, or succession planting can give you more harvest in a limited space in a smaller yard. If you have the acreage, planting a large traditional plot for a garden is something you may want to consider.

Spring is for planting, and that time has come. Put on the sunscreen, get out the spade, shovel or hoe and begin planting things that are not too frost sensitive as soon as you can. Broccoli, cabbage, beets and carrots do great as soon as it warms enough to till the soil. Squash and okra can wait for the hot days. 

Let’s start planting.

The author is a landscaper. He can ve reached at