The Ides of March once signified the beginning of the new year, which meant rejoicing and celebration. Being in Zone 8, March brings along the excitement of a new garden season. If you haven’t begun preparing for your garden already, now is the perfect time to start. Below are some tips to hopefully have you reaping the reward of all your hard work.
Houseplants. Days are getting longer, and indoor plants are starting to awaken, like the garden and trees outdoors. Now is a good time to repot them, if necessary and feed them well.
Stock Up. Nurseries, garden centers, and big box stores will begin putting out this year’s tools and supplies. Now is a good time to replace tools beyond repair. Pick up some summer bulbs, since they will be well stocked, and you can grab the best selection and store them in a cool dark place until next month.
Attend to Your Beds. This is a great time to start mulching and amending your garden beds. Be careful working your garden soil though, working soil when it is still too wet creates compacted clots, so just be aware to wait for dry spells. Clean up any leftover dried debris from garden beds and toss in the compost pile (start a compost pile if you haven’t already).
Start a Garden Journal (if you haven’t already). Buy a notebook and use it to keep all your gardening information. List what you plant in the garden and be sure to include the name of seed companies, plant name, variety, planting date, and harvest date. During the growing season keep notes on how well the plant does. If the variety is susceptible to disease, record what was used to treat any problems. All this information will be helpful in planning future gardens and deciding what seeds or companies you want to use.
Plant. The Wilmington, NC area enjoys a mild temperate climate and are in USDA Zone 8, affording us a long growing season. March is a great time to plant begin planting beets, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, eggplant, kale, lettuce, okra, peas, potatoes, radishes, spinach, tomatoes, and turnips.
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