The tulips are in full bloom. The apple trees are in their long awaited splendor of pink and white “cotton candy” colored bloom. You take every opportunity to go outside in between the rain and snow showers that roar through, but end so quickly as the cold temperatures succumb to the bright Wyoming sun.
It is now mid-April and that powerful Wyoming sun has warmed the soil to around 50 degrees, causing all of the root systems to push their stored energy upward. Everything is beginning to grow. What is your role in all this?
- Now is the time to fertilize everything. This is a crucial moment in the cycle of growth and a timely fertilization can provide an ample boost as well as strengthen the landscape to fend off disease. Always use the highest quality fertilizer available to insure that you don’t get salt build up in your soil. Now is the time to sign up for a professional fertility program for your trees and lawn. Professionals have access to the highest quality formulations, and they will insure that the timing of the applications are adequate. This is also the ideal time to apply weed control, since the noxious weeds are just blooming and haven’t had time to produce seeds.
- Aerate your lawn. Nothing is more effective in helping water absorption and relieving the winter soil compaction, than a heavy aeration. Never mind those unsightly plugs; they will dissolve soon enough.
- Over seed your lawn with pure Blue Grass seed after you aerate. These seeds will germinate in the cool spring weather and fortify your lawn with new grass plants. Over seeding can also help to fend off lawn diseases by introducing these new disease resistant grass plants to your lawn. You will want to purchase a high quality grass seed. You should apply 1-3 pounds of seed per 1000 square feet of lawn. Make sure that you spread it carefully so as not to get it into your planting or mulch beds.
- Beware of the broken trees! Many of the trees are still damaged from the severe snow storm last October. The winter wind and normal winter shrinkage has exposed more damage that wasn’t evident immediately after the storm. Many of these structurally fractured limbs will grow leaves normally because the cambium tissue is still perfectly intact. When the weight of the leaves accumulates on the defective structure of the tree, it will cause entire branches to come crashing down. It is important to have a certified arborist conduct a formal Tree Risk Assessment on your trees to identify and remedy these structural flaws before they materialize. It will take about 3 years before we get our trees back into good shape. It will be important to give them a lot of extra care in the form of: fertilization, disease prevention treatment, and pruning their shape back. Be sure to consult an arborist all along the way.
Keep preparing for spring and before you know it you will be harvesting tomatoes.