In this issue of Amateur Gardening : IT’S EASY to see why many people think that the Easter break (next week) is the start of the gardening season. The weather’s warming up, there’s a long weekend off work – it all seems to add up. But if you’ve really done nothing outdoors in the garden since October you’ll be losing at least a month of garden enjoyment (that’s how long it takes for all the plants to catch up from your late start). It’s murder trying to catch up with the pruning, weeding, digging and tidying when you should already be planting and enjoying the early flowers. Wrapped up warm, an hour in the garden each weekend during February and March will put you in a really good place by Easter. OK, it’s too late now to do like us goody-two-shoes, but don’t panic. Four simple steps taken this weekend will put you in a much better position: 1) Mow the lawn. 2) Cut the edges. 3) Cut back any shrubs that are clearly sticking out in the wrong place. 4) Hoe through the border soil (yes all of it, working around emerging summer bulbs and perennials). That’s a fair day’s work on a small to medium sized garden, and it will leave you a good part of Sunday to pottern around the garden centre, drinking tea, eating cake, and buying all the plants you haven’t really got space for! Now, remind me again – why did I bother doing all that work in February and March? Have a great gardening week. Tim Rumball - Editor
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