Oh Joy! My bulbs are starting to appear, some are a bit raggedy because of the recent March 1 day blizzards, but plants in Colorado quickly learn to adjust to this likely occurrence.
I was just at the grocery store and picked up a few summer flowering bulbs. I only get the kind that don’t need to be dug up in the fall.
I NEVER remember to do that, so it’s a bit pricey to buy gladiolus to bloom just once. In the fall I plant Tulips, Daffodils & Hyacinths that are just now poking out of the ground usually surrounded by snow. In the spring there are a few things you can plant including Dahlias, Begonias, Lilies and Gladiolas. “Lazy Gardener Proof “ that’s the only things I have time (and patience) for.
You can plant any of these May – September.
Plant these summer bulbs near the end of April in well prepared soil, follow the instructions on how deep the hole is and make sure the tip is pointing UP! If you can’t tell which is up or down, do a google search and click images, you should find plenty of examples of what to look for. Add a little bone meal to the planting hole. I often put three to five bulbs in a large hole to give the garden a lush natural look. Flowers in nature don’t grown in straight lines and neither should the one’s in your garden
Things to do in April in your Garden:
- If you left your perennial stalks to give interest to your winter garden, now is the time to start trimming all the dead back and gradually pushing back the winter mulch throughout the month. Forgot to do that in the fall? Well, whatever is coming up you know is super hardy!
- Cut back your evergreen perennials (plants that are green all year) and remove plant material from last year that’s on the ground.
- Plant and transplant perennials on a cloudy day or early in the evening. Plant at the lvel of the base of the stem in well prepared soil. You can also plant perennials in the mountains now if the soil isn’t still frozen.
- Make sure you follow the recommendations for your plants. Are they sun lovers? Partial sun? Partial shade? All shade? Some plants will just grow pretty much anywhere… I LOVE those!
- If you had an area of your garden that didn’t do well last year, it’s probably because you have things planted there that need different conditions, try dividing your perennials and plant them in different area’s this year to see where they thrive.
- Plant from seed hardy annuals and perennials like California poppys, snapdragons, bachelor’s buttons, baby’s breath, pansies & larkspur.
- Fork 2-3″ of good compost into garden beds, this serves as a weed barrier and water conservation method.
- Divide fall blooming bulbs and perennials in late April.
- Once the flowers on bulb plants like tulips and daffodils have died do NOT cut back the foliage until it has turned yellow… usually mid summer. These green leaves collect nutrients from the soil, sun and water to recharge your bulbs for next spring. DO cut back the flower stalks after they’ve bloomed and DON’T let them go to seed.
- Seed wildflower beds if it wasn’t done last fall.
- Cut back ornamental grasses at the base of the plant.
- Plant ground cover.
- Trim out old overgrown shrubs by pruning no more than 1/3 of the oldest canes from the base of the shrub. Wait to prune shrubs that are starting to bud out until after they bloom.
Spring gardening brings me back to balance… all things are new and fresh and ready to start over. If you are stuck in winter in your life… remember spring always comes. Just the feel of soil and seed in my hands reminds me of that each spring. Don’t forget to just sit back and enjoy the results of your efforts when you finish. A nice glass of sun tea, or a glass of Pino on your patio is a great way to enjoy life, get in touch with yourself and God and thank him for his bounty in your life.
Next: Dividing Perennials