Choosing Plants for Your Garden with Spring in Mind
Spring is the best time to dust off your gardening boots and step back out into the outdoors after the long winter break. It is most gardeners’ favourite time of year as it brings a chance of a new start. At Madingley Mulch in Cambridge we are enjoying the longer days spring offers, and we have a wide variety of gardening and landscaping products for you to enjoy too.
This includes top-quality soil conditioner products, such as our own unique blend Denise’s Delight which can be added to your soil now, before planting starts, to improve your topsoil and give your plants and seedlings the best start in life.
Once you have conditioned your soil, then it is time to start planning which varieties of flowers you want to grow, to brighten up the garden. You can choose annuals to flower this year or biennials which will give you flowers this year and next. Perhaps you are thinking of perennials which will return year after year – bigger and better than the year before! Or if you want a low maintenance garden then maybe you are thinking of shrubs to fill your tubs. Here is a guide to growing this spring.
Flowers to Plant in Springtime
If you are planning on having some summer hanging baskets, or are looking for something to fill your beds and borders, then you cannot go wrong with some busy lizzies. They are really good value, and are so easy to grow, so that even a novice gardener can enjoy plenty of blooms from these brightly coloured plants. Another great value flower is geraniums. They come in just about every shade, and the lemon and apricot varieties are the most popular flower on the market at the moment. Plant both these at the end of March or beginning of April and they will flower right through until the end of the summer.
A favourite for your patio pots are petunias, another spring planting flower which can fill containers for months. All you need to do to get them to re-flower is to do a little dead heading, where you remove any old flowers by nipping them off, and you will see new blooms appearing almost immediately.
If you have a lot of garden to fill, then in April plant some ground cover solutions such as creeping phlox. They form a layer of green foliage and above that a bright-coloured carpet which can suppress weeds, and because they flower right through to the first frosts of winter you can enjoy them for months without a break.
Shrubs for Spring and Summer
For a garden which needs a little less maintenance than one full of flowers, it is a good idea to introduce some shrubs in mid-spring, around April time. Cornus alba is a hardy shrub and can stay outside all year round. It is a lovely green-leafed plant which can be added to a pot for a statement piece, or you can use it as a hedge. Another good-looking shrub is the forsythia, which pretty much grows anywhere and is planted in June. It has little yellow flowers in springtime and really adds colour when little else is showing through.
Hedging is becoming more popular than ever, mainly because of the huge range of different types you can get. Shrubs are perfect for filling empty spaces in dark corners of the garden, and some types can offer security too, such as red leaf rose, an attractive dense thicket which is loved by wildlife. Plant it out at the end of March, giving it time to adjust before summer comes.
Fuchsias are some of the prettiest shrubs available, and can be planted as early as March. They flower from June right through to September and sometimes even into October. These multi-coloured plants can be added to baskets, containers or borders, making them ideal for filling spaces all over the garden. They have even been used on garden tabletops.
If you have missed the March-April planting window, do not worry, because many horticulturalists and garden centres offer a garden-ready version of many of the above plants. They are bigger than the plug plants offered in March and do not need to be grown-on, so they can be planted straight outside in the garden and will be ready to flower almost immediately. These garden-ready plants are perfect for those who do not have a greenhouse or have busy lifestyles. You will also find that there are lots of collections available which will have a variety of flowers, such as alliums, lupins and berberis, so you can fill your garden fairly cheaply and get a display that will be hard to beat next year.
At Madingley Mulch in Cambridge we have a huge selection of plant care products, such as soil conditioner, topsoil, compost, mulch, soil improver, lawn dressing and our own blends of Denise’s Delight and Tony’s Tonic, both of which have essential nutrients for all your garden and allotment plants. We offer free delivery in the Cambridge area and supply customers from a wide surrounding area, including Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire, Essex and Suffolk. We run a regular delivery service to destinations including Huntingdon, Saffron Walden and Newmarket, and this is free to all addresses within 15 miles of our base. To find out more follow the link.
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