If you are anything like our family, you counting down the remaining days of winter. I have been chomping at the bit, stopping by my local lawn and garden stores once or even twice a day. In southeastern Ohio, we have had quite a sporadic winter. This last day of February, we are having on and off snow showers, while just last week it was 65 degrees and sunny. I have prepped the small garden of my rental property on these sunny days—pulling weeds and putting up a little metal fence. These are trying times for gardeners—even a novice gardener like myself. To help ease the cabin fever, here is a short list of plants you can tend to in the early weeks of March.
The Crocus. The crocus’ botanical name is, in fact, Crocus. These flowers are synonymous with spring. They come in beautiful shades of blue, white, yellow, pink, orange and purple. If planted in the fall, they will bloom in springtime, and if planted in the springtime, they will add colour and flourish in the fall. I didn’t actually plant my crocus’ in the garden. I was surprised to see them poking through the soil a week or two ago, and am excitedly waiting to see what colour they will bloom. The flowers, along with a large hydrangea bush, are left over from whomever tended the garden and rented the house before. These flowers grow from a hardy bulb; mine are planted in partial sun, but also tolerate full sun.
Rosebushes are generally very hardy once they have established themselves. I have a total of 6 small roses on my rental property. Like the crocus’, their colouration and variety will be a surprise to me. I have been trying to revitalize them, with some (perhaps premature) pruning and feeding. Although roses will bloom okay without regular feeding, the quality of blooms increases greatly with fertilisation—as often as every two weeks. Depending on your part of the country, roses should be planted at different times. They do need to go out, however, before the last frost date.
Sweat pea is a charming annual flower, that you need to start around the first week in march, if you want to experience their colourful blooms in July. For best results, it is recommend you to soak a paper towel, then wrap the seeds inside the paper towel and place into a plastic baggie, like Ziploc. Place the bag with the seeds in a sunny windowsill. It should take between a week and 10 days before all the seeds sprout. They can then be placed in loose earth. It is important to give them a trellis, or something similar to vine on. Sweet pea can be found in a number of colour mixes and varieties and is easily one of my favourite summer flowers.
This is just a tiny taste of flowers for early planting! There are also many fruits and vegetables that can be started inside and transplanted after the threat of frost. It’s time to get a jump on early planting to get the full enjoyment out of your garden!
Jen. “Planting Sweet Peas.” At Home In The Northwest. At Home in the Northwest, 5 Mar. 2012. Web. 28 Feb. 2013.
McCarthy, Annette. “Crocuses.” : How to Plant, Grow, and Care for Crocus Flowers. The Old Farmer’s Almanac, n.d. Web. 28 Feb. 2013.
Piccino, Annelle. “When to Plant Roses.” Rose Gardening Made Easy. N.p., n.d. Web. 25 Feb. 2013.
Rots, Nina. “What Flowers to Plant in March.” EHow Home. N.p., n.d. Web. 28 Feb. 2013.