Signs of Life

early Spring2Chicago is a cool and damp city this week, but Spring is happening.  Small crocus have come and gone, larger crocus are opening, and the other beloved Spring bulbs are developing flower buds!  We have a somewhat short summer, so we need to take advantage of all the above freezing time we have.  Here are a few steps to insure you have a full Spring garden of flowers and veggies.

  • Turn compost pile and add to beds to amend the soil.
  • Sow your first (or second) round of radish, carrot, and lettuce seeds.
  • Sow sweet alyssum seed as a border and ground cover (tiny white flowers that bees love with a sweet honey smell).
  • You should be seeing the greening up of perennials like cone flower, shasta daisy, columbine, and rudbeckia.
  • Plant plugs of pansies, viola, snapdragons, stock, and English primrose.  All like the cool weather.
  • If you have cool veggies (broccoli, kale) you started indoors, now is the time to harden them off.  Start by introducing them to outside in 1-2 hour shifts over a few days, and then start leaving them out (semi-protected).  Next step is to transplant them on a partially sunny day to your garden.
  • Cut back all perennials if you haven’t done so already.
  • Lay soaker hoses for easy and efficient watering of your garden.

My big weekend plan is to get the stock I started out into the garden.  It looks like the weather may decide to cooperate.  Happy Gardening!early Spring

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