Garden Calendar

January:

Keep a garden journal. Consult your journal in the winter, so that you can plan for the growing season.

Order seed catalogs and begin planning this year’s vegetable garden.

Have soil test performed on garden plot to determine nutrient needs.

Clean and sharpen pruners and other small garden tools.

Scout cherry trees for signs and symptoms of bacterial canker.

Mid-January: Spray peach trees with approved fungicides to combat peach leaf curl.

Gather branches of quince, forsythia, and flowering cherries; bring indoors to force

early bloom.

February:

Sow seeds like cole crops (Brassicas) in indoor containers for transplanting later in the season.

Build a cloche, cold frame or hotbed to start early vegetables or flowers.

Prune and train grapes.

Prune fruit trees, blueberries, and fall-bearing raspberries (late February or early March.)

Prune deciduous summer-blooming shrubs and trees.

Plant fruit trees, new roses, and deciduous shrubs.

When soil is dry enough and workable, plant garden peas and sweet peas.

March:

Prepare garden soil for spring planting.

Cool season crops (onions, kale, lettuce, and spinach) can be planted outside when the soil is consistently at or above 40°F.

Indoor transplants should be hardened off before moving out into direct sunlight.

Compost grass clippings, leaves, and yard waste and spread finished compost over garden and landscape areas.

Prune spring-flowering shrubs after blossoms fade.

Plant flowers and herbs which will attract beneficial insects – alyssum, marigold, dill, sunflower, yarrow and coriander.

Start tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, okra, and beans in indoor containers.

Late March: Plant early cool-season crops (carrots, beets, broccoli, leeks, parsley, chives, rhubarb, peas, and radish.)

April:

Write in your garden journal during the growing season.

When the soil is consistently above 60°F (Use a soil thermometer,) plant warm season vegetables like beans, sweet corn, beets, carrots, celery, cucumbers, potatoes, parsley, and fennel.

Apply commercial fertilizers, manure, or compost to cane, bush, and trailing berries.

Prune and shape or thin spring-blooming shrubs and trees after blossoms fade.

Clean up hiding places for slugs, sowbugs and millipedes. Use least toxic management options including barriers, traps and baits like Sluggo.

Spray stone fruits, such as cherries, plums, peaches, and apricots for brown rot blossom blight, if necessary.

May:

Prepare and prime irrigation system for summer.

Use a soil thermometer to help you know when to plant vegetables. Wait until the soil is consistently above 70°F to plant tomatoes, squash, melons, peppers, snap beans, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, pickling cucumbers, kale, parsnips, pumpkins, summer and winter squash, sweet corn, and eggplant.

Plant dahlias, gladioli, and tuberous begonias in mid-May.

Prevent root maggots and cabbage loopers when planting cole crops (cabbage, broccoli, collards and kale) by covering with row covers or screens.

Plant indoor starts outdoors but harden off in filtered light before putting in direct sunlight.

June:

Stake or construct trellises for tomatoes, cucumbers, pole beans, and vining ornamentals.

Prune lilacs, forsythia, rhododendrons, and azaleas after blooming.

Fertilize vegetable garden one month after plants emerge by side dressing alongside rows or groups of plants.

Harvest thinnings from new plantings of lettuce, onion, and chard.

Pick ripe strawberries regularly to avoid fruit-rotting diseases.

Use organic mulches to conserve soil moisture in ornamental beds.

Deep watering less often is more effective than frequent shallow watering.

Weed, weed, weed and put weeds in compost pile.

Plant gladiolas and dahlias.

July:

Mound soil up around base of potatoes. Gather and eat a few “new” potatoes from each hill, when plants begin to flower.

Midsummer plantings of beets, bush beans, carrots, cauliflower, broccoli, lettuce, kale, Chinese cabbage, kohlrabi, rutabagas,and peas.

Dig spring bulbs when tops have died down; divide and store or replant.

Mulch plants, especially blueberries to protect against hot summer sun. Cover blueberries with netting to keep birds from eating the crop.

Check leafy vegetables for caterpillars and cutworms at night. Pick off caterpillars as they appear. Use Bt-k, if necessary.

August:

Fertilize strawberries, cucumbers, summer squash, and broccoli to maintain production while you continue harvesting.

Prune out dead fruiting canes of raspberries, blackberries and other caneberries after harvest and train new primocanes prior to end of month.

Recycle disease-free plant material and kitchen vegetable and fruit scraps into compost pile.

Plant winter kale, Brussels sprouts, turnips, parsnips, parsley, bok choi, cabbage, cauliflower, spinach, and broccoli, and a mid-summer planting of peas.

September:

Protect tomatoes and/or pick green tomatoes and ripen indoors if frost threatens.

Harvest potatoes when the tops die down. Store them in a cool (40 degrees,) dark location.

Plant daffodils, tulips, crocus and other spring-blooming bulbs. Work calcium and phosphorus or bone meal into the soil below the bulbs at planting time.

Plant winter cover of annual rye or winter peas in vegetable garden.

Watch for dampwood termites which begin flying this month.

Fall planting of trees, shrubs and perennials can encourage healthy root growth over the winter.

October:

Clean (or build) greenhouse or cold frames for winter planting.

Clean and prepare annual flower beds for winter by layering with compost or manure.

Plant garlic for harvesting next summer.

Save seeds from the vegetable and flower garden. Dry, date, label, and store in a cool and dry location.

Dig and store geraniums, tuberous begonias, dahlias, and gladiolas.

Divide peonies and iris.
November:

Drain or blow out your irrigation system, insulate and wrap valve mechanisms, in preparation of winter.

Clean, sharpen and oil tools and equipment before storing for winter.

Spade organic material and lime into garden soil.

Service lawn mower prior to winter.

Place a portable cold frame over rows of winter vegetables.

Place mulch around berries for winter protection.

Still time to plant spring-flowering bulbs, such as tulips, daffodils, hyacinths, crocuses. But don’t delay.

Plant garlic for harvest next summer.

December:

Spray stone fruits like cherry, plum, peach and nectarine with lime sulfur.

Order seed catalogs.

Rake leaves, cut and remove withered stalks of perennial flowers, mulch flowerbeds, hoe or pull winter weeds.

Turn the compost pile and protect from heavy rains, if necessary.

During heavy rains, watch for drainage problems. Tilling, ditching, and French drains are possible solutions.

 

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