March is here, and it's time to look at the garden with fresh eyes and head on out there. Because...
It's time to lime. If your yard has any grass at all, it's time to apply lime and sweeten up the soil.
This will help you avoid moss, which I find green and lovely, but others, it appears, do not. The folks at your local garden centre will help you decide how much you need.
It's time to find the weeds while they're small and pluck them out. This time of year the soil is moist and weeds are easy to pull and you have a better chance of getting the root. Spend 10 minutes a day and you'll save yourself lots of time later.
It's time to seed some tomatoes. This is the most popular vegetable grown by home growers such as yourself, and for good reason. If you have some grow lights, or a bright window sill, this is a great time to start your seeding. Lots of local stores have a wide variety of seed to choose from and knowledge to help you out.
It's time to head out and buy things that are already blooming to fill in those spots of your garden that need colour. There are more than 500 varieties of primulas, but all you need to know is that they are relatively inexpensive and, with a bit of care, can come back year after year.
They will fit anywhere in your garden now, but move them to a spot with dappled sunlight as we head closer to summer. They often, in the right spot, will start blooming again in the fall - bonus! A small basket by your front door filled with primulas is a wonderful way to greet your guests.
Yes, buy some potted tulips and daffodils. They are relatively inexpensive (try Super Grocer in Steveston).
The tete-a-tete (miniature daffodils) as well as the miniature irises are fantastic additions to your garden as well, since they multiply over the years to provide a wonderful display every spring, and are an excellent choice for the new gardener.
It's time to go to Garden City Greenhouses, which is on Cambie near Garden City. They are closing their business at the end of March and everything is 50 per cent off. We have purchased trees and shrubs there in the past and found them to have a great selection.
Remember, buying trees is much like buying real estate - location, location, location.
Will the location be sunny enough? When the tree reaches it's full mature size, will it hit overhead wires or obstruct the view? Look ahead and choose wisely.
And, finally, it's time for spring!
Deb Brodie is a local gardener and member of the Richmond Garden Club. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.