Tuesday, March 01, 2011
Gardening In March- Planning, Seed Starting, Cleaning, Dreaming....
Seasonal Gardening Tips for Early March from the New York Botanical Garden
* Continue to use garden notes, photos, and sketches to assess areas that need plants
* Finish ordering seeds
* Continue to order plants for later delivery
Chores and Maintenance
* Check on winter plant protection; add mulch and adjust plant stakes as necessary
* Continue to inspect ornamental trees and shrubs for scale insects
* Use wood ashes from the fireplace as a good source of potash
* Avoid the use of salt to melt snow, as it is toxic to most plants. Use sawdust, sand, or cat litter instead
* Check on dahlias, cannas, and gladiolus bulbs for rotting and/or drying out
* Keep bird feeders filled throughout winter
* Take cuttings of indoor plants now to use as bedding plants in the late spring; e.g. lantana, geranium, coleus, heliotrope, fuschia, begonia, etc.
* Sow seeds of annuals which require a long growing season, e.g. lobelia, petunia, vinca, browallia, snapdragon, verbena, etc.
* Continue to prune away storm-damaged branches promptly to prevent tearing of the bark
* Prune forsythia, pussy willow, quince, etc. for forcing indoors
* Prune summer and fall blooming shrubs
* Continue to give houseplants increased humidity; mist often or place plants over a tray of moist pebbles
* On frigid nights continue to protect indoor plants from freezing; move them away from the glass or cover glass with thick newspaper or cardboard
* Continue to clean leaves of large and smooth-leaved houseplants like dracaena, philodendron, ficus, etc.
* Inspect houseplants for insect pests. Remove pests by hand and spray with insecticidal soap, if needed
* Clean clay pots by soaking overnight in a solution of 1 gallon of water, 1 cup of vinegar, and 1 cup of bleach