Keep track of what you need to do this spring-summer to improve the quality of your soil and build an environment where your plant life can thrive through fall. Each action item is timed and designed with California’s Mediterranean climate in mind so that you can confidently stay on top of things. Learn new gardening tips, plan ahead, stay organized, and get that feeling of pure satisfaction as one-by-one you check things off this list.
Take Action In Early Spring with Soil Amendments, Mulch, and Planting Seeds
Although March and April have come and gone it isn’t too late to follow through with some of the items we’d recommend within those months. Within early spring it’s important to begin landscaping with your soil in mind so that it has excellent texture, plenty of organic matter, and healthy pH levels to support optimal plant life. Here are a few tasks and gardening chores to help set your landscape up for success.
- Clear dead leaf debris and remove protective winter mulch.
- Cut back last year’s dried foliage by pruning trees and shrubs.
- Divide your perennials to encourage their growth and add fresh mulch.
- Add soil amendments to improve the quality of your dirt.
- For more information see: Tips on Modifying your California Soil with Amendments and The Best Soils for Vegetables, Fruit, Flowers, and Other Landscaping Needs.
- Prepare planting beds by the following:
- Turn soil. Add at least 2 inches of compost. Test for pH, nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium and add the appropriate soil amendments.
- Shop for rhododendrons and azaleas. Feed them after they have flowered.
- Plant vegetables that germinate best in cool soil.
- Plant gladiolus and dahlias for summer color.
- Plant companion plants to provide an environment that welcomes beneficial insects.
- Ex: cosmos, marigolds, nasturtiums, sunflowers and zinnias to attract bees.
- Water early in the morning to prevent wet foliage at night.
- Wet foliage attracts snails and fungal diseases.
- Pull up fava bean plants when half of the blooms have opened.
- It will give your soil the greatest return of nitrogen.
Mid-Spring Must Dos to Optimize Your Garden Compost and Support Plant Life
Continue pruning, planting, and preparing your landscape with these mid-spring action items.
- Turn back on the irrigation for spring and summer.
- Prune back herbaceous perennials, like salvia, to promote a bushy look.
- Work your cover crops into the soil before they have a chance to seed.
- Remove snails and slugs either by hand or with slug bait.
- Remove aphids from plants.
- Transplant tomato seedlings.
- Plant new trees and shrubs once the ground isn’t frozen and apply new mulch.
- Plant gladiolus, dahlias & lilies for summer blooms.
- Plant summer annuals.
- Ex: Lobelia, begonia, marigolds, cosmos, petunias, snapdragon, and alyssum.
- Plant edibles like lettuce, tomatoes, herbs, zucchini and berries.
- Place bean, corn, cucumber, melon, and winter squash seeds into the ground.
- Be cautious of using insecticides as they can kill beneficial insects.
Late-Spring, Early Summer Tips for an Abundant Garden and Landscape
Keep your landscaping momentum going in May and June with the following:
- Improve your garden soil with organic material.
- Check your irrigation system and turn it on.
- Inspect sprinklers to see if they’re working properly. Replace any broken heads. Clean out clogged ones.
- Remove spent blooms from spring-flowering bulbs so they can conserve energy.
- Add summer annuals to your landscaping.
- Plant your warm-season edible crop and those that need a lot of irrigation.
- Ex: Pumpkins, squash, sunflowers, peppers, basil, melons, beans, corn, cucumbers, eggplant, peppers, and tomatoes.
- Harvest radishes when the crown begins to show above the soil.
- Harvest new potatoes
- Utilize ladybugs and other beneficial insects.
- They can help control aphids, mites, whiteflies, and other garden pests.
- Add bark mulch to your strawberry crop. Lift flowers and leaves above the mulch.
- Let self-seeding annuals go to seed instead of deadheading for another crop.
Lyngso Garden and Landscaping Supplies in California
At Lyngso, soil lovers, gardeners, DIY-ers, and landscapers are the heart of our business. Based in San Carlos, we are a family-run and employee-owned business that has been working for over 50 years as a resource for our community. We offer materials and expertise to educate, assist, and ultimately satisfy our clientele so that we build long-lasting relationships. If you have further questions or need assistance with your garden and landscaping goals, please contact us.