|Spring is the best time to divide perennial plants.|
NC Cooperative Extension Master Gardener
Spring is a gardener’s busy time of year! Along with soil preparation, weeding, and mulching, spring is a great season to plant perennials, shrubs, trees, and spring vegetables.
- Find a quality compost or mulch source. For new gardens, loosen soil and add compost before planting.
- In established beds, top-dress with 3 to 4 inches of mulch to reduce weed germination and add organic matter. Remove weeds before mulching! Perennial weeds and Bermudagrass will grow right through it.
- If adding compost, mix in a 1- to 2-inch layer and then soil test! After April 1, soil testing is free at the NCDA&CS Soil Lab. The soil test report will indicate if you need lime or fertilizer.
- Always choose healthy plants— bargain plants may introduce pest problems.
- Dig up, divide, and replant your perennials now so they will have enough time to reestablish before summer.
- Shrubs and trees can be planted in spring, but do not plant too deeply! The soil will settle, and you don’t want the flare of the trunk below soil level.
- Mulch new plantings and give them water during summer dry spells.
- Plant spring vegetable transplants or direct seed those that like cool weather, such as peas and radishes.
- Start warm-season vegetables by seed if you have a sunny indoor spot.