Click below to listen to my Garden Bite radio show: Of poo and perennials
Oh boy, those warm temps we had made getting out in the garden very tempting. I did cut back my perennials that I had left up for winter interest. The grasses and sedums were done! If you haven’t, now’s the time.
Using loppers to cut back ornamental grass
Leave 2 to 3 inches of the stems so that bunnies who come by to dine on those fresh greens might think twice if they realize they’ll get poked in the eye with a “relatively” sharp stick!
luscious green growth
I also had a chance to get some horse manure that has sat for 3 years. This will add to the organic matter of my soil. Horse manure has a tendency to have weeds in it but I think the good outweighs the bad. I was going to take pictures of it but, frankly, there’s not much to look at! I will say I picked plenty of rocks out of it. [note to you all: if someone offers you free stuff, check to see if it’s worth it]
Right now I laid the manure on top of my garden, there were rocks in it that I needed to pick out, but I will be using a garden fork to turn it in. I’m not going to till this in – studies have shown that we compact our soil when we till too much. It breaks down the soil taking out the air pockets.
Sedum left up for winter interest
I had a soil test done last Fall and found that I needed more organic matter and also nitrogen. Amounts of nitrogen in animal manure vary, horse manure is reportedly less than cattle so I will add bloodmeal sparingly. It’s fast acting but could burn seedlings. Other options include Creekside Soils mix of Composted Cow Manure and other products.
Remember to be very careful if you’re raking your lawn, those roots are delicate during this time of year and if you’re too rough, you could further damage your lawn.
I just about lost my rain barrel over the winter. I wasn’t thinking and the half full barrel froze which bowed out the bottom of the plastic container. My husband wrestled it off the blocks and got it out in the sun and, surprisingly, it looks like the bottom may be righting itself. Reminder to myself and you – if you have a rain barrel, empty the contents BEFORE winter! It also looks like I need to spray paint again! I used 2 shades of green for that camo look!