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There's work in the garden year round. To make the most of yours, weeding, sowing, and pruning is important at the right time.

Early Spring, February–March

This is the beginning of the gardening year, and heralds a busy period for gardeners. However, don’t be overeager: keep off lawns, beds, and borders if they are frozen or wet, as walking on them risks compacting the soil. And don’t attempt to dig until the weather improves.

Preparations

  • Start weeding: pull small seedlings by hand but dig out the roots of perennials such as dandelions, or use a glyphosate weedkiller.
  • Prepare the soil for planting by forking it over and digging in organic matter.

Sowing seeds

  • Sow seeds of half-hardy and tender bedding plants indoors in a frost-free place.

Planting

  • Plant summer-flowering bulbs, hardy perennials, and ornamental grasses.
  • Plant bare-rooted shrubs and garden trees.

Pruning

  • Prune bush roses.
  • Prune deciduous shrubs and climbers that flower later in the summer, such as buddleja, jasmine, lavateras, and certain varieties of clematis.
  • Prune hardy evergreen shrubs and trees.

Other Tasks

  • Lift and divide oversized clumps of perennials; discard dead or unproductive sections in the middle of the clump.
  • Prepare soil for planting in fair weather.
  • Rake the lawn, removing leaves and other debris, and brush off worm castings if you need to mow.
  • Repot or top-dress shrubs, climbers, and alpines growing in pots and containers.
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Learn to Garden ,

Dorling Kindersley Limited

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