With Climate Change wreaking havoc on our “4 Season Destination” tourist slogan, why not choose some new seasons? Our area of South Georgian Bay, Ontario, Canada seems to have 2 seasons: Ski Season and Garden Season. Garden Season is in!
If you have already weeded your garden, added manure or compost, and mulched your garlic, you may as well hit the “unsubscribe” button below. Just kidding- want a job? For you other couch potato gardeners, I am about to peer pressure you with fear tactics into staying on top of your garden chores.
If you want anything to grow this season here’s 3 things to do today:
1) WEED: If winter didn’t kill those weeds, nothing will. Unless they are annual/biennial weeds, in which case get out your fav weeding tool (mine is what I call my dagger, seen above) and pull them out. If they are perennial weeds (ie. twitch grass, bindweed, mint, horsetail, etc) you have 2 options:
#1) Make peace with said trespasser. Surrender your need to conquer the soil and make an agreement to share with the perennial weed. Sometimes I turn a blind eye to the bindweed in the back near the gooseberries. Don’t spend tear-filled hours painstakingly removing every single sign of it. It will be back next week.
#2) I think home hardware sells Round Up. Just kidding. Don’t get your organic cotton knickers in a knot. Don’t use Round Up/Glyphosphate. We can talk about that later. Really you have only one option, see #1.
2) AMMEND: Add compost or manure to the top layer of your soil. Ideally you did this in the fall, but if not, get to it. It sounds fancier than it is. I just dump the stuff on top, let my toddler run through it a couple times, and make sure that every fistful he eats is a good mix of old and new soil – inevitably mixing the new stuff in a little. You can rake it in, tousle it with your hands, or borrow a toddler. Feed your micro-organisms. That’d be a good tshirt.
3) SOW: Start planting. Planting a garden is not a one time event on the May long weekend. For early and continuous harvests, you’re gonna have to keep your seeds handy. The first week of April is generally a good time to plant cold loving crops that don’t require a lot of heat to germinate. I like to throw some pea, radish, lettuce, spinach, and arugula seed down. It’s a great time to use up old seed (plant densely) and to involve kids in the planting. Sometimes they sprout, sometimes it gets cold again and you’ll need to re-sow in a week or 2. It’s like gambling. The thrill!