What Work Needs To Be Done In The Garden In Spring? Pruning Fruit Trees. Planting Seeds, Seedlings. Garden Care

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What Work Needs To Be Done In The Garden In Spring? Pruning Fruit Trees. Planting Seeds, Seedlings. Garden Care
What Work Needs To Be Done In The Garden In Spring? Pruning Fruit Trees. Planting Seeds, Seedlings. Garden Care

Video: What Work Needs To Be Done In The Garden In Spring? Pruning Fruit Trees. Planting Seeds, Seedlings. Garden Care

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Video: March Planting Guide Zones 5 & 6 - What you should plant in your garden in March 2023, February

After a long winter, it is important not to forget that it is time to start your spring gardening work. But at the same time - do not overdo it! Spring is perhaps the most important time for a gardener. The health and appearance of the garden throughout the season depends on how correctly and in a timely manner the necessary spring work will be performed in the garden. Let's figure out what needs to be done in the spring.

Getting started in the spring to prune shrubs and trees
Getting started in the spring to prune shrubs and trees

Spring cleaning

Spring is the time of the biggest cleaning in the garden. Old leaves, dry last year's plants, windbreak, the remains of supports and shelters, as well as other garden debris left over from autumn and winter, must be cleaned up after the end of frost. In the course of harvesting, remove the young weeds that have appeared until they have grown stronger, did not have time to bloom and are easily pulled out by the roots. Wash greenhouse frames and glass, clean gutters, clean moss from patio or garden path tiles, clean garden furniture - this is the season of active use of all of the above.

After the snow melts, we start cleaning the garden from garden debris and dry plants
After the snow melts, we start cleaning the garden from garden debris and dry plants

Mulching and fertilization

Mulch perennials, shrubs and trees with fresh garden compost, or at least good quality garden soil. Garden compost is an excellent fertilizer that contains all the nutrients the plant needs. It also improves soil composition and structure by helping to retain moisture near the plant roots, which is especially important during hot and dry seasons. Most plants do not need any more fertilization after that if your garden has relatively fertile soil.

If individual plants require additional feeding, then dry organic fertilizers (granular manure, droppings, blood, bone and fish meal, ash, charcoal, etc.) can be applied in a small amount before mulching. In early spring, mulching and feeding is especially important for perennials, roses and other shrubs and trees that bloom later in spring or early summer.

Sowing and planting

Spring is the time of intensive sowing and planting of vegetables and ornamental crops.

To get an early harvest, some vegetables can be specially forced in the open field, covered with a transparent plastic dome cap (these caps are sold in garden centers) or with a film on raised fasteners.

For an early harvest of rhubarb, on the contrary, it is covered with a large pot that does not let in light. The lid of such a pot is opened so that the grown leaves are outside and the plant receives sunlight. At the same time, the stems remain closed, undergoing blanching - they stretch and become more tender. The rhubarb driven out in this way is ready for use in May.

After the end of the threat of night frosts and warming the soil, the time comes for sowing or planting seedlings of thermophilic decorative (fuchsia, pelargonium, verbena, petunia, heliotrope, begonia, nasturtium, etc.) and vegetable crops in the garden. If you decide to purchase ready-made seedlings in a garden center or in a catalog, do not forget to place an order or purchase in advance so that by the time of planting in the ground, your seedlings are ready and hardened.

Repair and clean greenhouses
Repair and clean greenhouses

Trees and shrubs

In early spring, it is necessary to prune many trees and shrubs, roses and climbing plants that bloom in late spring, summer and autumn on the shoots of the first year (be careful not to prune those that bloom on older shoots). Spring pruning is very important and should be completed before the plant starts actively growing in the new season.

Spring is the time of flowering of many charming trees and shrubs: forsythia, daphne, Japanese quince, camellia, rhododendron, winter flowering erica, mahonia, witch hazel, magnolia, keria, pieris, cherry, and later - tseanotus, lilac, apple tree, viburnum, mock orange, wisteria, azaleas and many, many others.

Some of them will need formative pruning immediately after flowering to allow them to form new shoots for equally lush flowering the next season. Spring pruning waste produces excellent cuttings that have a high potential for further growth.


In spring, many bulbous blooms: crocuses, snowdrops, daffodils, tulips, hazel grouses, ornamental onions. Do not forget that after the end of their flowering, the leaves should die off naturally (the exception to this rule is the snowdrop, which is better to divide immediately after flowering). To cover ugly places with drooping yellow leaves and as a spring top dressing, I mulch the wilted bulbous leaves with fresh compost.

Do not forget to mark the places where spring bulbs are located, so that later you do not accidentally disturb their peace, deciding that this place is free. If you dig up tulip bulbs after flowering, then you need to start this 30-40 days after the flowers wither. The vacated space can be used for sowing annuals. In early spring, summer-flowering bulbs should be planted in the ground. With heat-loving plants (nerine, cannes, dahlias), you should wait until the end of the frost.

Prepare for planting bulbs and rhizomes of perennial and summer crops
Prepare for planting bulbs and rhizomes of perennial and summer crops


Early flowering spring perennials - primrose, lungwort, bergenia, hellebore - give way to the following ones in turn: aquilegia, shaved, horny, periwinkle, geranium, forget-me-not and other charming inhabitants of our gardens. In early spring, before the start of the new growing season, cut off last year's penstemons, winter-hardy vervains, perovski, ornamental grasses and other perennials that are recommended to be left for the winter.

After standard spring processing, perennials won't need much attention. Do not forget to remove old peduncles in time and cut off yellowed leaves.

Pots and baskets

Now is the time to create charming potted and hanging basket arrangements that will adorn your garden and patio from late spring to late fall.

What else should not be forgotten

Even if in December and January frosts did not damage the fruit trees, at the end of winter they can do their dirty work. February - early March are dangerous due to sharp temperature changes, sunburns of the bark of boles and the bases of skeletal branches. During this period, rodents are especially active: mice and hares.

In February, work should be continued to cover the boles and foundations of the skeletal branches with snow, collecting it outside the trunk circle. When visiting the garden, do not forget to shake off the adhering sleet from the branches, under the weight of which some branches may break. It is easier for hares to get to tree branches through snowdrifts. Use a deterrent, such as a solution of tar or creolin (2 tablespoons per bucket of water).

On a warm day, continue to trample the snow from mice in a circle (1.5-2 m from the base of the trunk), lay out briquettes of anti-mice drugs (storm, bromorate, norat, etc.) in pipe cuttings, bait boxes (storm, bromorate, norat, etc.) in accordance with the instructions. Mice more often damage young trees (up to 12-15 years old).

Sunburns in March are especially dangerous for stone fruit crops, many varieties of apple trees (Melba, Lobo, Welsey, etc.). Resume whitewashing boles and bases of skeletal branches if it was washed off during the autumn-winter period. This should be done after the snow melts at a positive temperature.

Do not forget to fill the bird feeders with sunflower seeds, various cereals. Titmouses especially love unsalted lard attached in places inaccessible to cats. In the summer, they will thank you, become active helpers in the fight against pests such as aphids, various caterpillars, etc.

In the spring, with proper shelter, you can start planting early vegetable crops
In the spring, with proper shelter, you can start planting early vegetable crops

Spring pruning of fruit trees

Is it necessary to form the crown of a fruit tree, or will it take the desired shape by itself?

Of course, trees will not die if the gardener does not actively participate in the formation of the tree crown. Only now the yield, duration and regularity of fruiting, the quality of the fruits, the conditions for caring for the tree will deteriorate sharply. A properly formed tree uses light energy more rationally, and is more resistant to diseases and pests.

The formation of a tree begins immediately after its planting and continues almost throughout its life. The most common formations of a fruit tree are in the form of a sparse-tiered or vase-shaped crown. Let's consider them on the example of an apple tree.

The sparse-tiered crown contributes to the natural state of the fruit tree. On the trunk, branches are arranged in tiers (2-3) and singly. In early spring (at the beginning of budding), 40-50 cm from the soil level are measured on a planted one-year-old apple tree and all branches are cut off in this segment or sprouting eyes are removed. This is the future stem of the tree.

The main branches of the first tier are formed 30 cm above this zone, the rest of the tree is cut off above a well-developed bud. It should be located exactly over the place where the thorn was cut (when viewed from top to bottom). It is important to observe this in order to avoid curvature of the future trunk.

In the spring of the next year, shoots are removed on the trunk, and in the area where the main branches are located (i.e., 30 cm above the trunk zone), as a rule, 3 branches are left, the rest are cut out. The lowest one should be at the height of the stem end, and the other two should be higher along the trunk with an interval of about 15 cm. It is very important that all 3 branches are directed in different directions. Above, only one continuation branch should grow. The nearest competing branches are cut to the base (per ring).

Small twigs (shorter than 30 cm) do not shorten or cut, they are more prone to bud formation and fruiting. The next year, 2-3 more main branches are formed above the branches of the first tier in the zone of 50-60 cm, with an interval of 10-15 cm between them. A year later, another main branch is formed 40 cm above the branches of the second tier. Thus, the skeleton of the crown of your apple tree is formed. The central conductor should always be 15-20 cm higher than the end of the main branches. After a year, the central conductor is cut off.

Thus, the optimal tree height will be 2.5-3 m. In the future, this crown height is maintained throughout the tree's life.

A vase-like crown is formed mainly for short-lived and relatively weak trees. They begin to form it in the same way as a sparse-tiered one. The first 3 branches are located in different directions at a distance of 10-15 cm from one another. To obtain paired branches, these branches are cut at a distance of 40-50 cm from the central conductor, and the conductor is cut off above the upper main branch.

In the future, they do not allow overgrowing of the center of the crown, regularly cut off all strong branches located on the upper side of the main branches and directed towards the inside of the crown. Small overgrown branches are not cut off.

What types of pruning of fruit trees are there?

The main types of pruning of fruit trees are as follows: sanitary, maintenance and restoration. During their life, trees are exposed to various influences that cause damage to the trunk and branches. Dried and broken branches cannot be left, they must be removed as soon as they are found. This work can be done in spring, summer and fall. Seen wounds on the trunk or skeletal branches are cleaned with a sharp knife to healthy wood, disinfected with 3-4% copper sulfate and covered with garden varnish.

In early spring, preferably before sap flow begins, tree pruning begins with sanitary cleaning. From the moment the tree enters fruiting after crown formation and in subsequent years, support pruning is used.

It is very common to see trees in gardens that are excessively stretched upward, the lower part of the crown is shaded, there are almost no fruits on it. The main crop on such trees is placed only on top, its collection is difficult. Therefore, it is necessary to limit the growth of the tree, cut off the central conductor at a height of about 2 m above the side branch directed outward. This work cannot be delayed. Then it is determined with a critical eye whether thinning of the crown is required. As a rule, there is a need for this.

Cut out crossing, rubbing, going inward or closely spaced one above the other branches. When deciding how best to proceed - to cut one large or many small branches, preference should be given to the first option.

When thinning the crown, you can shorten the branches or cut them completely (into a ring). If only a few buds closest to the apex awaken on an annual branch, shortening is necessary. The degree of shortening depends on the length of the branch: the longer it is, the more it needs to be shortened.

Many varieties of apple trees are prone to fruiting periodicity. One year they give a large harvest, the other - almost nothing, since in a harvest year they did not have enough strength to lay fruit buds for the next year's harvest. Therefore, in the expected harvest year, the excess number of fruit buds should be removed, there will be no damage. In this case, it is necessary to thin out part of the ringlets, fruits, cut off the tops of some fruit twigs and spears. If there are few fruit buds, then when pruning a tree, try not to cut them off.

With aging or due to severe frost damage, the trees often stop growing and bear little fruit. In this case, restorative pruning is used. Aging trees are pruned to rejuvenate. First of all, they reduce the number of potential growth points. For this purpose, the tops of the aging branches are cut off.

When pruning old neglected trees, the crown is reduced by cutting out a part of the central conductor with the upper branches, which will improve illumination inside the crown, and fruiting will be not only along its periphery, but also in the center. Branches drooping to the ground are cut into branches oriented upward. It is advisable to carry out such pruning not in one year, but in 2-3. Both overgrowing branches and fruits are subject to rejuvenation.

If the trees were very frozen over the winter (there were severe frosts or after long thaws there was a sharp cold snap), you should not rush with pruning, you must wait until the buds start to grow. In this case, it will be seen which branches are frozen to the ground, they are cut out completely. If the tops of the branches are damaged, they are shortened to living wood. In a year with harsh winters, pruning should be gentle. If in doubt, it is better to postpone it until next spring.

When pruning trees, use well-honed tools. Places of cuts with a saw must be leveled with a garden knife, the cuts are covered with garden pitch. Do not forget about safety precautions when carrying out these works.

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