Marion County has experienced a taste of spring weather in the last week-and-a-half, but gardens and flower beds may not quite be ready for spring work just yet. Sherryl Nunnikhoven with Dutch Meadows Garden Center in Pella says residents need to not let warmer temperatures tempt them out into their gardens too soon.
“We get these nice days and people like to spend time outdoors, and they want to get out their rakes and uncover and get rid of all that dead-looking stuff, but that stuff there is a really nice insulation from the cold – because we’re going to get some more cold spells,” says Nunnikhoven. “If you uncover and you’ve got those new little shoots that are coming up and just starting to emerge, it’s really hard on them if we get another hard freeze.”
Many tulip beds around Pella are already showing sprouts several inches above the ground, and Nunnikhoven says that other spring flowers should be making their appearances soon as well.
“You’re going to see crocus start to bloom pretty quickly, and just your other perennials…and it’s a good time to go and clip all that dead growth off that you left for winter interest, but the thing is to not be tempted to uncover things,” adds Nunnikhoven. “You can clip them back, but the matted-down underneath, dead stuff; don’t pull that off yet.”
Nunnikhoven adds that with so much precipitation this past winter and early spring, gardens and flower beds will need some time to dry out before planting and gardening can take place.