Ah spring, such an exciting time of year! Daffodils are dancing in the wind and the tulips are not far behind.
There is colour and light in the days again. Our days are once again filled with opportunity.
What does this mean for us gardeners? It means that spring has blessed us with a precious gift. The gift of time.
So how do we use this time effectively? Here I will give you some of my top recommendations for making the most of your garden in March.
One of the most important tasks and one I get asked the most questions about is lawn care.
With ground temperatures rising, this creates perfect damp conditions for moss to spread. Everyone's lawns will be filled with moss at this time of year and it is important to start treating now if you want a rich green lawn this Spring/Summer.
To get rid of moss fast and to green up your lawn, follow the Zero Lawn Care Solution to keep moss under control and feed the lawn after the cold Winter spell.
What is the Zero 2 Step Lawn Care Solution?
Step 1: Tackle the moss. Apply a dressing of Zero Lawn Moss. This will start to remove moss down to the roots overnight.
Step 2: Feed & Green. 24 hours after applying Zero Lawn Moss, apply Zero Lawn Feed to green your lawn for up to 3 months and further suppress moss.
This step is optional. If you suffer from persistent lawn weeds, apply Greenforce Lawn Weedkiller after using Zero Lawn Feed ideally after the lawn weeds have finished flowering.
Moss is a problem on most patios, paths and driveways right now. After the Winter and damp weather our paths can be green and slippery with algae and moss.
Treat now with PAC - Patio moss and Algae Cleaner.
PAC is the hassle free alternative for cleaning hard surfaces, It's easy to use, fast acting and very effective in removing moss and algae quickly.
It is a biodegradable liquid concentrate for controlling green and red algae growth from hard surfaces including patios, tarmac, stone and brick paving, garden walls, timber decking, timber fencing and stone walkways.
NEW Product for 2023 is PRO PAC! PRO PAC is the ideal solution for professional gardeners, landscapers, maintenance operators and those with larger hard surface areas.
It is more concentrated therefore you only need to buy one rather than two for larger areas and frequent use.
One of my favourite spring flowering plants is the Campanula Porto, also known as the Blue Bellflower. This low-growing flower blooms from March to early May. It's very easy to grow as it grows in all soil types.
Its ideal for planting in groups along borders and in raised flower beds. This blue beauty is a welcome addition to every spring garden.
Spring flowering plants can be planted now in borders, containers, and pots to add that instant pop of colour.
Be sure to add some new fresh compost and mix in some feed to get them off to a good start.
Don't be afraid to deadhead and remove the new growth, to encourage double and bigger blooms.
Flowering Alpines such as Aubrieta, Saxifraga, Ibris are long lasting and will return each year!
The Alpine plants are a stunning collection of spring flowers. They are a range of hardy, low-growing, creeping border flowers.
Alpine plants flower every year and if planted in groups they create a beautiful cluster of long-lasting colour.
These can grow in rockeries, borders and flower beds. Alpines are also ideal for planting in pots and containers.
Alpines need very little care making them particularly useful in the garden, a sunny spot and free draining soil is the main requirement and they will give you enjoyment for years to come.
During certain months these are on fantastic Multibuy offers - check out your local Horkans Garden Centres.
Sow & Grow
Blueberries are a super-food linked with numerous health and wellness benefits. Thankfully, they're also fun to grow and produce a fantastic crop of flavorsome juicy blue fruit.
They're also fantastic for adding vibrant and eye-catching colour to a garden. You can grow blueberries in pots and patio tubs.
When planting, use compost and whilst growing, feed the plants with plant food. Blueberries fruit over a long period, meaning you will enjoy regular fruits from June to September.
Pear and plum trees grow well and fruit reliably in Ireland. In order to achieve the best results, plant the trees now on a sunny, south facing wall or trellis.
Train your fruit trees to act as a wall cover, the protection from the wall will help to ripen the fruit and encourage strong growth. The best plum variety I grow is called the Victoria – a tasty, juicy fruit produced in abundance from mid July.
Rhubarb is an easy to grow and bountiful fruit. I recommend planting the Champagne variety now, which will be ready for consumption in early April to July.
When planting, add some compost and a handful of Osmo Pro 6 fertiliser.
Nothing beats the taste of homegrown, new potatoes. Eating those thin-skinned, balls of floury goodness is a highlight of the gardening year.
My favourite variety of potato is the Irish variety Colleen. They are easy to grow, blight resistant and packed full of flavour.
Start chitting your seed potatoes getting a good strong eye, and plant out in a pot or raised bed, for a crop of new potatoes come June.
Do you want a quick and easy way to grow some of your 5 a day? Then choose a selection of the Speedy Veg & Salad seeds from Suttons.
The Speedy Veg & Salad seeds offer you a range of edibles that can be harvested in as little as three weeks. If you have limited time, space or gardening skill then consider growing some micro-green seeds including micro broccoli, peas, cress and alfalfa.
They can be grown indoors on a warm windowsill, and will provide you with tasty, nutrient-dense, ‘fast food’.
Lettuce, cabbage, and broccoli plants are all available now for planting in your borders or grow bags.
Have you heard about the Vegepod? It is a self contained raised garden bed, perfect for growing fruit and veg.
It is up off the floor and has a canopy cover to keep out pests and ensure a successful crop.
Look After Your Wild Birds
In March, our garden birds seek out nesting locations to rear their young. Help your garden song birds by adding a nesting box to your garden this spring.
Erect your nesting box in a tree between north and east to avoid strong sunlight and wet winds. There is a broad selection of feeds and feeders in our wildlife section available at your local Horkans Garden Centres.
So make the most of the opportunities that spring has given us. Savour your day and savour your garden.
Remember, the secret of getting ahead is getting started
If you have questions or would like more information on gardening by month,
just contact your local store where one of our helpful and knowledgeable staff will be happy to help and answer any questions you may have.