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Honey Do List: Spring gardening

It’s not quite spring yet, and we probably still have a round or two of ice or snow to contend with, but it’s not too early to be pondering the spring garden. For those who just can’t wait to get your fingers in the dirt, the next three or four weeks will be a good time to get your seeds started inside. That is, if you want to get a headstart and try for an early crop.

Timing is critical. If you start your seeds too soon, they may grow out of their containers before spring arrives. Start them too late and they won’t be ready in time. A good rule to follow is to start your seeds about eight weeks before the last expected spring frost.

The “Old Farmer’s Almanac” (www.almanac.com) gives April 11 as the last frost date of 2018 for our area. This is the Tuesday before Good Friday. A lot of folks like to plant a little earlier, but they do run the risk of losing plants or having to go to the trouble of covering them up should a frost occur.

Choose a starter planter with proper drainage. Get creative! Seed flats, peat pots, plastic cups, egg cartons and even takeout boxes with holes poked in the bottom work well. In general, your planting containers should be at least three to four inches deep. Fill them to about a quarter-inch from the top with soil. For best results, use a good potting soil or seed-starting soil to provide the best nutrients and to avoid insects or fungi that may be hiding in regular soil.

Peat pots are very inexpensive and very effective. Soak them in water before use to prevent them from pulling moisture out of the soil and away from the plant. Covering containers in plastic wrap can help hold in moisture until plants emerge.

Different plants require different amounts of water and sunlight. The package they come in should be a good guide to follow.

Alright, let’s get growing! Remember, help is just around the corner at your local hardware store.

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