Welcome to the first weekend of spring! Now, get to work.
The ground is warming along with the weather. Soon, it will be time to get serious about planting summer vegetables.
Prepare garden beds by digging in compost, aged manure and soil amendments. Let it mellow for at least two weeks before planting those beds.
▪ Can’t wait to get started? Many veggies can be planted now. In the vegetable garden, sow seeds for beets, carrots, celery, Swiss chard, endive, fennel, jicama, leaf lettuce, mustard, radishes and turnips.
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▪ In the flower garden, plant aster, celosia, cosmos, larkspur, nasturtium, nicotiana, portulaca, salvia, snapdragon, verbena and zinnia.
▪ Frost season is officially over, but your plants may still feel chilly. Protect early, warm-weather transplants such as tomatoes, eggplant and peppers with instant hothouses – plastic 2-liter soda bottles or gallon jugs. Cut off the bottom and leave the top open for air circulation. Your transplants will feel cozy and grow faster.
▪ Weed, weed, weed! Get them out before they go to seed. According to master gardeners, the most common weeds in Sacramento County in March: filaree, wild geranium, bedstraw and such annual grasses as foxtail, barley, wild oats and bluegrass.
▪ Instead of pulling weeds, use a sharp hoe. Cut the weeds off just under the root crown; aim for about a half-inch below soil level. This method disturbs soil less than pulling weeds, and keeps new seeds from migrating to the surface where they can sprout.