Spring is just around the corner, so it’s time to prepare your garden. Some of you will just need to do some basic maintenance tasks, but others will be planting a vegetable or flower garden for the very first time. Don’t worry, we’ve got you both covered with advice and equipment.
- We’ll start with a job you can do while it is still cold and while the ground isn’t yet ready for planting. Repair any structures, like fences or gates. Check your raised garden beds, if you have any, to see if any lumber needs to be replaced. Untreated wood generally begins to rot after 5 years, so it may be time for this job.
- This is also a good time to get rid of any tree limbs that may have died and to prune branches on trees and shrubbery while they are still dormant. For branches that are bigger than 3 inches, use a chainsaw; for smaller branches, use a pole pruner or manual pruner.
- Make sure to disinfect your tools between shrubs so that you don’t inadvertently spread a fungus or disease around your garden.
- Don’t prune any shrubs that show new growth.
- After the ground has thawed, it’s time to prepare your soil.
- Grab a handful of the soil and squeeze it together. If it stays in a hard clump, it is probably still too wet to work with yet; ideally, it should crumble.
- Get rid of any vegetation on the ground, including (and especially!) weeds.
- You will definitely save days of backbreaking work by renting a gas-powered or electric garden tiller to break up the dirt before you plant anything. These are quite simple to use, but we made a short video to demonstrate how.
- For larger areas, a rear tine tiller will do the job best.
- The tiller will turn up the earth (including small rocks) to a level of about 10 inches and will aerate the topsoil. Any vegetation that you remove can be composted.
- Your raised garden beds will likely need new soil after the winter.
- If you will be moving a lot of dirt, mulch, or heavy materials, you may eliminate multiple wheelbarrow runs by renting a mini skid loader. Mini skid loaders can also be used with cultivator or tiller attachments.
- As the weather warms up and your grass starts growing, it’s a good time to aerate your lawn. Aeration frees up compacted soil at the surface by drilling holes so that air, water, and nutrients can penetrate down to the roots of the grass.
- Before you mow your lawn for the first time, put fresh gas in your lawnmower and check that the blades are sharpened. Also, check to make sure that you have beer or water standing by for your first official post-mow relaxation session!
- Top up the tilled earth with fertilizer and compost. Test your soil before you add anything, so you know what you are dealing with and what your soil needs specifically. It should ideally have a pH of 7-7.5. This is a complicated topic, so we suggest that you do some reading. Here is one site with a clear explanation of what plants need as far as nutrients go.
Now you are ready to plant! Vegetables like lettuce, peas, cucumbers, squash, and radishes can grow from seeds in the garden. Vegetables such as tomatoes, eggplants, and peppers do best when they are started indoors and then planted in the garden.
Getting your garden ready for planting season can seem like a daunting task, but with the help of YouTube videos and labor-saving equipment from Northside Tool Rental, it’s more than manageable. There is no need to go back to Little House on the Prairie days!
If you don’t have the right tools you need to prepare your spring garden, Northside Tool Rental has everything you need for the job. Contact one of our experts today to discuss what tools you need and how we can fully equip you to get the job done. We have convenient locations in Marietta, Gwinnett, Doraville, and Buckhead.
Call us at 404-233-6722 to get your project started.