Aside from clearing out the fallen leaves and pruning the perennials the most important step is always
amending the soil and replacing nutrients before I can do the fun stuff...putting in the spring blooms.
This year it took actually buying a trunk full of pretty flowers to get me in gear but once I started there was no stopping me.
I always add a bag of chicken manure and a bag of good quality garden soil to the beds once they've been cleared of leaves and weeds. As well as a good quality systemic fertilizer like Osmocote all over the flower bed.
After the debris is cleared I spread a layer of chicken manure and a layer of fresh soil evenly throughout the bed. I will then go over it with a hoe making sure I mix it in well with the existing soil. Lastly I sprinkle some Osmocote on top. When I put in new flowers I will add a few granules of fertilizer to the hole as well.
I like using a hula hoe to turn the soil over and mix in the fresh nutrients. If you've never used a Hula-ho before I highly recommend one. It weeds and turns the soil over at the same time and since it's pretty narrow, it fits most everywhere in the garden. I use it often during the gardening season for general weeding as well. It makes quick work of a dreaded job but necessary job.
Even my hubby has caught the gardening bug and has started a few vegetables in these cute little 2 x 3 raised beds that he built over the weekend. It really does show that it doesn't take much space to grow a few plants of your own. Just a spot with around six hours of sunshine and a handful of seeds.
All the hard work pays off immediately with the beauty of a newly planted flower bed. But as pretty as this looks now, it pales in comparison to what it will look like in a few short weeks and for months to come.
So what about you? Once the weather permits, will you be out there digging in the dirt and planting a flower or vegetable patch of your own? If not, I challenge you to find a big pot or a little piece of dirt and give it a try. I guarantee you won't be sorry.