Shrub and Tree Garden in Mid Spring
Spring might have been a little hesitant in appearing during the last few weeks, but there will be no doubt about its presence by now., and will be in flower, wall-grown and will be setting their fruit, many shrubs and trees will be blossoming. New leaves and shoots will be sprouting everywhere, and so will the weeds. The places most likely to need urgent weeding will be rose-beds, hedge bottoms, trained fruit grown against walls or as dividers and specimen trees grown in beds.
Pruning will continue to be a major activity. There will be some planting and this is also the time to startvarious shrubs. Seeds which have been stratified through the winter, and others, can be sown; there may be to take in sheltered gardens.
Although woody plants are apparently not much affected by bad weather, it is only short spells of bad weather to which they are immune. Prolonged cold, drought,and wind take an equally prolonged and severe toll, but it does not show on this type of plant until months, perhaps even a year, have passed. Unfortunately, by that time, some other type of unfavourable weather may have ensued and the compound damage results in a small, unhappy plant, if it lives at all.
It is extremely important to foresee these problems and take steps to ameliorate them before they have lasted more than a week or two. For instance, in early spring, strong, cold wind, bright sun and drought can set in and continue for six weeks or more. The effect of this on newly-planted evergreens can be death, unless you put up a barrier in theof the prevailing wind, keep the soil moist and spray the top growth every day.
Friends and foes in the insect world will be on the move, like everything else; disease spores will be floating about in their millions, and there may still be trouble from birds and animals. A variety of jobs will be started now, to be carried on through the season; these include blueing hydrangeas,, swards and deadheading flowering shrubs.