March In The Garden

With March coming in, you can expect spring to follow if it hasn’t already in the south.  It’s common in the south for our spring to come in February

Camellias

Camellia blooms still last through March and even though some varieties have finished, some are just getting started.  You can safely plant Camellias through May in the south.

The BEST time to purchase and plant Camellias is when they are in bloom.  Our biggest selection at Blackcreek Nursery is between October and March, with our heaviest sales in January and February.  If you’re looking for a great selection, then don’t wait until spring when most of them will be out of stock!  We’d love to have you visit!

Pruning Camellias is best done after they bloom but since all Camellias bloom at different times, you can safely do it before the plant starts putting on new growth.  Camellias do not have to be pruned if they are planted in the right spot.  If you do have the need to prune your Camellias, you can do that in March or early April.

Freezes In Spring

Spring can be early and so are our spirits.  The weather is warm and we are just itching to get out and get stuff planted.  Before you go out and plant bunches of tender plants, consider Mother Nature’s ugly sting.  It is not uncommon in the south for us to have two springs.  One early, then a freeze then another spring.  If it looks like you’re going to have another cold blast, be prepared to protect tender perennials and shrubs that are just showing new growth if a spring freeze comes our way.

Fertilizing In March

Don’t be too quick to add fertilizer in early March.  It’s best to wait and do it after St. Patricks Day or even into early April.  If you’re using organics such as Espoma’s ‘tone’ products, go ahead, it’s fine to use that any time in March.

Planting In March

March is an excellent time to plant most shrubs and trees.  Perennials may need to wait until the end of March or the first of April.

We have lots of great plants including Fruit Trees, Shrubs, Shade Trees, Camellias and Tea Plants available for you this spring!

Mulch Mulch Mulch

March is an excellent time to replenish mulch in your beds.  Applying a 2-3″ layer of mulch around shrubs, trees, annuals, and perennials can help with weeds, moisture loss and high temperatures.  Organic mulch like leaves, bark, and straw is recommended.

Did you know you can mulch your containers?  Yes, you can!  Adding bark chips to your container plants is an excellent way of keeping them cool, moist, and weed-free!

Plant Availability of Bedding Plants & Perennials at Blackcreek 

We are small growers and what we don’t grow ourselves, comes from other small growers.  Just because spring may be early, doesn’t mean that the plants will grow for us and other small growers any quicker.  Most perennials, bedding/annuals, and even some veggies won’t be ready until late March or early April.

Pruning

March is an excellent time for pruning most shrubs.  Word of caution to hydrangeas.  Pannicle hydrangeas bloom on new wood, so it’s ok to prune those.  But the old traditional hydrangeas will bloom this summer on growth from last year, so keep pruning on those until after they bloom.

Chemicals in the Garden

March is the time to consider garden insects and disease issues that you will have now and for the next few months.  The need to use chemicals in our gardens is something that we just can’t get away from.  But there are many alternatives to harsh chemicals that can hurt pollinators.  If you must use chemicals, always read the label and use the product as specified.

Know what Your Issue Is

Before you grab the chemical bottle, you need to know what your issue is.  The most important part of any chemical application is to know exactly what you’re treating for.  Don’t guess and apply a chemical needlessly.  We are always available by text, email or just dropping by and we are more than happy to help you figure out what your garden problems are.

Safe Insecticides 

Neem Oil works very well for controlling most insects including Mites, scales, Aphids, and many other insects without harming beneficial insects.   Did you know that Neem Oil is also a great fungicide and can help protect plants from many types of fungi?

Dawn Dish Detergent makes an excellent organic spray and can work wonders on things like White Flies, Aphids, and even some mites.  Mix 1-2 tablespoons in a quart of water and put in a spray bottle or tank.

Espoma Earth Tone Insectide Soap is organic and is formulated for many insects.  It is available online or at local garden stores.

Weed Control

Our go-to for organic weed control is a product called Avenger.  It’s made with orange oil and has excellent weed-killing abilities without hurting our pollinators.  There are many organic weed products available and can be cost-effective if you’re using them in a small area.  Keeping a 2-3″ layer of mulch will help greatly with weed control.  Keep in mind that some non-organic weed killers can harm beneficial insects & pollinators.