North Caldwell Magazine March 2012 Issue Features Editorial by Jason Sponzilli

Gardening: Plan Ahead This Spring
By Jason Sponzilli as Published in North Caldwell Magazine

Planning is the key to a successful landscape.  Here are some helpful planning tips to help you get ahead of your landscaping goals this spring.  Whether you are trying to recover from the violent October snow storm of 2011 or you have ideas to add a new perennial garden, or even an outdoor barbeque, planning ahead will help make this year a success. Thus far, the winter season has been on a long vacation in comparison to the massive amounts of snowfall this time last year.  The October storm created so many problems for landscapes throughout the town.  Tree limbs, branches, shrubs and entire trees were either damaged or uprooted.  This damage caused many homeowner’s financial strain due to costly removal fees that were completely unexpected.

Once spring arrives, many of those trees or shrubs will likely have to be replaced or an unsightly stump will have to be removed.  Start planning now so you will be ready to take advantage of this spring’s ideal planting conditions.  Be sure to select the appropriate tree or shrub for that area to avoid a similar situation in the future.  Garden centers and plant nurseries will be stocking their facilities within the coming month, so you will be able to select from a wide variety of plants.

Some other helpful planning tips would be to perform a proper spring cleanup by removing winter debris from the beds and lawn along with edging your plantings beds.  Installing a fresh layer of new mulch annually helps in a number of ways.  It controls weeds naturally by preventing their germination.  Mulch also improves the quality of the soil by adding beneficial nutrients and retains soil moisture.  The roots of plants remain cool in the summer and warm in the winter, the way nature intended.  Lastly mulch enhances the appearance of the landscape by creating a finished, neat and attractive appearance with natural tones found in nature.
Good luck this spring with all your gardening and landscaping endeavors.

March Tip:    ROSES. Now is the perfect time for hard pruning and fertilization. The stronger roses are pruned (with the exception of climbing roses), the fuller, more vigorous and better blooming they will be.

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