21 Mar HOW TO AVOID SPRING GARDEN FEVER
Spring garden fever might seem like a good thing to have, but unless you temper some of that excitement with patience and restraint, you might well end up with an unmanageable mess of a garden. I made every mistake in the book when I was a new gardener, and now, even as an experienced gardener, my excitement sometimes still gets the best of me. So to avoid spring garden fever, follow these steps — and repeat after me, “Slow and steady wins the race!”
- Don’t buy pretty flowers early just because you see them at the garden center. Sometimes garden centers jump the gun and stock their aisles with all the colors and leaves and veggies they can get their hands on, no matter that it’s still weeks until your last average freeze date. Resist, people! I know you’re itching to get out there and plant, but I promise you, you’ll be bitterly disappointed if you do it too early.
- Avoid purchasing every type of tomato you find. My husband and I still make this mistake on our first early spring visit to the garden center. If you love tomatoes (or any other veggie or fruit), choose a few good varieties that work for your area and plant those. In a few weeks, plant a couple more, and repeat that cycle for several weeks to ensure your harvest doesn’t come in all at the same time. Make a note of what varieties didn’t work this year, and choose some different ones to try next year.
- Pace yourself. How many times have I overdone it and gardened for 8 or 10 hours straight, just because it felt so good to get outside again? Then I pay for it the next couple of days with a sore back and legs. You don’t have to get it all done in one day, friends — pace yourself so that you can continue to enjoy gardening throughout the season and save on chiropractor bills.
- Remember sunscreen. Even early spring sunshine can cause sunburn, so while I recommend sunscreen year-round, it’s easy to forget it during the first few garden days. Sunscreen, long-sleeved shirts, and a wide-brimmed hat are a gardener’s best friend.