A short piece about spring pruning and lawncare.

as featured in the Madley Park Newsletter.

After the La Niña effect this winter, which bought us heavy snow fall, high winds and some very cold nights, it’s time for a look at the garden. For the veg growers out there it’s past time to start your spring jobs, however this is about the gardens of Madley Park. If you are lucky enough to have a fruit tree then there is still some time left to prune it. For the rest of us, it’s time for a Spring clean, and to do all the things we should have done in Autumn!

Gather up all the fallen leaves and dead bits of plant and get rid of them, either in your Garden Waste Bin or take them to the council. Now is a good time to prune any plants which aren’t flowering, most common garden plants don’t have many special requirements. Perennial plants like Hosta’s, Geraniums and Iris can be lifted and split with a spade if they have gotten a little big.

Right enough about the easy stuff, what about the lawn. Luckily most of us have small lawns so what I’m about to say shouldn’t be too overwhelming. Your lawn needs raking. Literally take a rake, preferably a spring rake (the one of that looks like spread fingers made of wire) and rip along the surface in all directions. When finished you should have a mass of brown and green stuff which you throw away and a terrible looking ex-lawn. Now if you want you can take a garden fork and stab it all over.

Why? You may ask.

The raking was to remove the thatch (dead bits of grass) and any loose moss. Grass grows faster than moss so if you have moss in your lawn then the grass is not happy. This could be for a variety of reasons (poor drainage, shade) and there are some good websites out there to help you work it out. The fork was to aid drainage and allow some air down to the roots. Most lawns take a lot of stomping in the summer from kids playing and the summer BBQ with friends which compacts the soil. It won’t look awful for long, but it will be worth it when it starts to grow.

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