The combination of a lingering chill and our COVID self-isolation is leaving many of us feeling as gray as the weather. Unless you caught one of the fleeting warm spells earlier this month – and did a little spring cleanup – your yard, like mine, has seen better days.
But as I write this blog, Saturday looks more promising. And, with a few dips along the way, you can expect our temps to continue warming as we head into May.
So now is a good time to start raking grass, leaves and branches, trimming dead leaves and stalks on perennials, picking up litter – and bagging it. Separating the compostables from the garbage, of course.
Keeping social distancing in mind, yard work (and fresh air) is highly therapeutic, and the satisfaction of turning a muddy mess into something neat, orderly, and ready to plant, will help offset the malaise of overdosing on our news channels.
And the reward for a job well done will be planting your new flowers and veggies. But be patient – getting too early a start will mean doing it again.
Is It Too Early to Start Planting?
“With the rise in temperatures and the thawing of soil, there will be a strong urge to get planting,” said Vince’s plant specialist Debbie Rich. “You really have to watch the weather. For flowers, you may be able to start a couple of weeks before the long weekend. But with vegetables, you should probably wait until a week after Victoria Day.”
“And watch for frosts,” she warned. “You’ll need to cover everything up if the temperatures drop sharply at night.”
Vince’s Will Be Carrying a Fresh Selection of Flowers and Vegetable Plants
With many garden centres closing due to the COVID pandemic, choosing your plants may be more challenging than last year. Nonetheless, Vince’s will be carrying a fresh selection of annual bedding plants, vegetable plants, hanging baskets and planters.
Popular bedding varieties like geraniums, petunias, pansies, and begonias will quickly bring life to your gardens. And potted plants will instantly dress up a porch or deck.
“Victory Gardens” became popular during World War 2, and seem to be making a comeback. Our long days sequestered at home create an excellent opportunity to take up a new hobby – or re-energize an old one.
Unlike wartime, we’re not experiencing food shortages, but there’s nothing better than homegrown veggies, picked at the peak of ripeness and placed straight into salads and stir fries.
It’s a Great Time to Start an Herb Garden
Fresh herbs are also popular with both foodies and nutritionists. These not only add enticing aromas and flavours to food, but offer significant health benefits that include vitamins, minerals, and potent antioxidants.
“We carry a full selection of herbs, including basil, thyme, sage, rosemary and chives, along with so many more,” noted Debbie.
She added that one of the keys to healthy, robust plants, is that Vince’s buys from local greenhouses. “We work with local growers, who deliver our plants fresh, directly to our stores. They don’t spend days in the back of a tractor trailer.”
And to reassure customers visiting our locations, racks of these fresh plants have been spaced appropriately to allow shoppers to browse while respecting social distancing guidelines.
Visit our website to view the full list of COVID-19 safeguards, and drop by our stores to get your yard and garden ready for spring.
Be safe, and be well!