March 2024 Gardening To-Do List: A Guide to Spring Prep

March marks the beginning of a new gardening season, full of potential and growth. To help you make the most of this transitional period, we've compiled a comprehensive to-do list tailored specifically for March gardening tasks. Stay tuned each month for an updated list!

1. Plant Cool-Season Beauties

March is the perfect time to start planting cool-season plants that thrive in the lingering chill of early spring. Consider adding the following varieties to your garden:

  • Hellebores: Also known as Lenten roses, these early bloomers offer delicate, nodding flowers in shades of white, pink, purple, and green. 
  • Pansies: With their cheerful faces and vibrant colors, pansies are a staple of spring gardens, providing a pop of color after the winter months. 
  • Primroses: These dainty flowers come in a rainbow of hues and are prized for their ability to brighten shady spots in the garden. 
  • Perennial Violas: Similar to pansies but smaller in size, perennial violas add charm to borders, containers, and rock gardens. 
  • Forced Spring Bulbs in Pots: Bring the beauty of spring indoors by potting up forced bulbs such as tulips, daffodils, and hyacinths for early blooms.

2. Pot Up Summer-Flowering Bulbs for an Early Start

Get a head start on summer by potting up bulbs such as dahlias, lilies, and gladiolus. By starting them indoors now, you'll ensure a longer blooming season once the warmer weather arrives.

3. Warning of Upcoming Problems

Stay ahead of potential garden pests and problems by taking proactive measures:

Ficaria Verna

Viburnum Leaf Beetle 

4. Addressing the Biggest Question: How to Fix Your Lawn

Give your lawn some TLC by following these steps:

5. Early Season Weed Prevention

Stay vigilant against early-season weeds like Ficaria nevus by seeking advice from professionals at the Chalet Diagnostic Desk.

6. Seed Starting

Start warm-season crops like tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants indoors around March 15 to give them a head start before transplanting them outdoors.

8. Spring Clean Up

Clear out debris and prepare your garden beds for new growth:

  • Mulch Options: Consider using mulches such as Chalet leaf mulch, compost, cotton burr mulch, or bark mulches to retain moisture and deter weeds.
  • Perennial Bed Clean-Up: Trim back dead foliage and tidy up perennial beds to encourage healthy growth. But be sure to wait for temperatures to go above 50 in order to protect hibernating pollinators.
  • Bed Preparation for Vegetables & Annuals - Prepare your garden beds for planting by incorporating products like mulch and Preen to suppress weeds and enrich the soil.

9. March Pruning

Follow best practices for pruning shrubs and trees:

  • Best Tools: Invest in high-quality pruning tools and keep them sharp for clean cuts.
  • Rule of 3: Understand when to prune spring bloomers, summer bloomers, and evergreens for optimal growth and flowering.

March is a pivotal month in the gardening calendar, signaling the start of a new growing season filled with possibilities. By following this comprehensive to-do list, you'll set yourself up for a successful and beautiful garden throughout the year. Happy gardening!

Jennifer Brennan

Horticulture Information Specialist, advising and coaching gardeners at Chalet for over 30 years.