March 17, 2007
Happy St. Patrick’s Day. Did you know that it is an old New England tradition that you plant pea seed in your garden on St. Patrick’s Day so that you can have fresh peas with salmon on the 4th of July? It may be a bit snowy this year, but I think that the soil will at least be thawed out enough to plant peas.
The 70 degree weather of Wednesday made people want to get outside and do SOMETHING. The problem is, there still isn’t a lot you can do outside. If you want to pick up litter from the winter, that should be fine, but even raking the lawn can do more harm than good. When the soil is wet, raking can actually pull grass up by the roots. As you hopefully know, no grass roots means no grass. When your lawn doesn’t feel spongy to walk upon, then you can start to rake up the lawn.
It is also way too early to plant grass seed. The soil needs to warm up a lot more before grass seed will germinate. Usually mid to late April is the right time to be putting down grass seed.
I have seen a lot of print and TV ads for crabgrass preventer. It may be time in some parts of the country to put down pre-emergent crabgrass control, but it’s a few weeks off before it is time to do this in New England. You need to be able to rake your lawn and then put the crabgrass control down when you are done raking. The best rule of thumb is to have your crabgrass control down when the forsythia is in bloom.
You should soon be seeing the daffodil bulbs putting up new growth. These bulbs are very cold tolerant and any snow or cold weather we get from now on out will not hurt these plants. The bulbs normally bloom in mid to late April, so they had better start growing soon!
It looks as though we are only a few weeks away from being able to actually do something in the yard. Have a little patience and soon you will be able to be outside almost every day.
Well, that’s all for this week. I’ll talk to you again next week.