You may think it’s way too early to think about your spring landscaping, with cold temps and ice and snow still on the ground. It’s not—and the earlier you get started, the easier it will be when spring arrives. Check out this winter checklist to get your business looking professional.
Get a Head Start on Your Spring Landscaping
· Remove debris. The winter checklist starts off with a bit of cleanup. If you haven’t been keeping up with this during the winter, now is the time to start, on the first day of good weather. Wet leaves and other debris can encourage mold and disease and provide shelter for pests. You won’t get very far with anything else until you get everything cleared out, anyway.
· Trash removal. Clear out any gravel and/or cinders left behind in your parking lots, and remove plow stakes. Remove any broken asphalt that’s left behind after the snow melts.
· Weeding. Some weeds won’t die off during winter and may be the first bit of green you see in the spring. Much like trash and debris removal, weeding is an important part of cleanup before you start planting and mulching. Start with a pre-emergent weed control product and mulch now to keep the weeds from overtaking your plant beds and other areas.
· Pruning. Remove the dead and dying branches from trees and shrubs before spring. Prune your perennials now, too, rather than fall, so that beneficial insects and butterflies have a home during the cold winter months. Spring pruning also encourages new and vibrant plant growth.
· Remove unwanted plants. From nearly-dead trees to those that impede your property (like tree roots that crack and break concrete), now’s the time to get them out of the way.
· Edge the landscape beds. They improve the property’s aesthetic, maintain the shape and form, prevent material loss, and create rings that protect plants.
· Prepare beds for planting. Whether it’s flowers, shrubs or decorative grasses, whatever you plant needs a well-prepped place to live.
· Mulching. If you added mulch in the fall, turn it, and add more double-shredded mulching to create a two-inch barrier. Along with a herbicide, you’ll have a double layer of protection against weeds.
· Sharpen mower blades. A “tune-up” for your mower should include a good blade sharpening. Grass will be evenly cut and promote healthy growth through spring and summer.
· Repair any public areas that may need it. Walkways, benches and other items that may be damaged during the winter should be assessed now and repaired as soon as possible. Concrete or asphalt that’s been under snow and ice may now be cracked, broken or otherwise dangerous to anyone using your walkway. Start your repairs as soon as the weather permits it, and monitor the area for any additional problems.
Spring will be here before you know it. Get a jump on spring planting and landscaping now, and you’ll be ready when winter’s over for another year by using this winter checklist.