Are you ready to turn over a new leaf – or a shovel-full of compost? This month is all about beginnings. That includes getting serious about planting a vegetable garden.
It’s still too early to set out tomato plants (plus peppers, squash and eggplant), but you can find many other tasks to keep busy. That includes selecting the right site for your veggies.
The key to summertime success is sun. Lack of leaves now on deciduous trees can make it appear that some spots in your garden are sunnier than they really are. Choose a location for your veggie patch that will get at least eight hours of sun each day.
▪ Prepare your soil for the work ahead. Add compost and other amendments. Let it mellow two weeks before planting.
▪ In the vegetable garden, plant seed for beets, carrots, celeriac, celery, collards, endive, fennel, jicama, kale, leaf lettuce, mustard, peas, potatoes, radish, spinach, Swiss chard and turnips.
▪ In the greenhouse or indoors, start seed for summer and winter squash, peppers, eggplant and tomatoes. They’ll be ready to transplant in late April or May.
▪ For spring and summer flowers, plant seed for aster, cornflower, cosmos, larkspur, nasturium, nicotiana, periwinkle, portulaca, rudbeckia, salvia, snapdragon, verbena and zinnia.
▪ Feed roses and other spring-flowering shrubs, so they can get off to a fast start.
▪ Pull weeds now! Get them while they’re little and the ground is still soft.