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Spring is Coming! Spring is Coming!

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welcome Spring

Welcome Spring

Dear Casual Gardener,



Swooning for Spring

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WOW! (picture me hopping up and down) It’s actually almost, not quite, getting close, feeling a little warmer, snow is almost gone, oh my GOSH I think it’s coming – SPRING!!!

I have the patience of a 3 year old when it comes to waiting for Spring. It is just that it takes SO LONG to get here. Perhaps you can tell a true gardener based on this impatience?!?! Driving by a community garden, I recently saw a few bulbs popping out of the ground and thought I was going to pass out with excitement. I literally screamed, “BULBS!!!” The rest of the car riding with me thought I was crazy.

I have already been inundated with questions from my fans related to cleaning out their beds. Apparently last years perennial growth is looking a bit unkempt and messy for all of you. The answer for all is YES! You can clean your beds out starting now, although I would prefer you wait until April – there’s less chance of very heavy freezing and the more cover on your beds, the better. I also caution you against overzealous digging up until May. There’s been many a year I have dug up and destroyed perennials that take a lengthier time to pop out of the ground.

At this time of year I focus more heavily on clean up. The first week of April is usually city brush pick up week. In preparation of that I trim any dead branches off bushes and trees. It is a great time to shape your bushes as you have a clear sight line of the shape and form without leaves distracting your vision.

New tree buds will start to form soon and I receive a heap of oak leaves on the shady beds West of my home. I dig these leaves into the ground near the plants which might require a higher acid content like Hydrangeas and Azaleas.

Finally I clear up any winter damage and get my tools ready. Last year my husband surprised me with a lovely pre-Spring gift – a new wagon. The wheels are rubber, bouncy and quiet – my neighbors have thanked him for it ever since.

So welcome Spring with open arms – – it is time to get out there and get messy!

Shawna Coronado says Get Healthy! Get Green! Get Community!

Chicago Flower & Garden Show 2009

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