Now that the ice has melted (at least here in Atlanta) and all the love that could be spread on Valentine’s Day has been spread, you may be wondering how to best prepare your yard for what’s just around the corner…SPRING! Of course you are. Well I for one will be glad to have these gray, cold days behind me and get some more time in my yard.
February is a strange month for gardening no matter where you live. Here in the southeast, we may be in the 20s one day and in the high 60s a day or two later. This leaves us gardeners as confused as the plants. But don’t let that stop you from getting into your yard to take advantage of the occasional sunny days to get prepared so that you can fully enjoy the greener days ahead.
You can find region and date-specific gardening to-do lists from a number of online and offline resources. I’d encourage you to find one that suits your needs and make it your own. Your local botanical garden and county extension office are often the best and most reliable sources that can provide you information specific to your area’s plants and growing conditions.
As you approach your to-do list, I want to encourage you with a few things:
- Don’t let the list of things you could do overwhelm you to the point of not doing anything. Prioritize your list, do what you can, and be good with what you were able to get done.
- Don’t feel like you have to put your blinders on and knock everything out all at once…you don’t really need to. Some of your tasks will require you to focus on them for a period of time, while others you’ll be able to do more casually as you’re futzing around the yard. I’m amazed how much I can get done while waiting to flip the burgers or hanging out with my girls or while I watch the chickens peck at the ground (yep, I do that).
- Break apart aspects of some tasks and do them on different days. For example, shop for your supplies one day, get things set-up another day, and finish the task another day. This will give you margin and allow you to enjoy yourself more…and not be such a bear to be around!
- Do whatever you can to increase the chances of enjoying yourself…just because it’s on a to-do list doesn’t mean it has to be a chore.
- Be neighborly…ask to help your neighbor with some of their tasks and invite them to help you with yours. Most things are more enjoyable doing with someone else…not to mention, some of your tasks will undoubtedly be more doable if you had a helping hand. Your neighbor may also have expertise in an area that you are less familiar with and vice versa. And…if you don’t know your neighbor, take this as an opportunity to meet them.
- End your day outside with your family or neighbors, sharing a meal, a drink, a s’more…or all the above. This will give you something to look forward to and potentially give you the opportunity to enjoy some of the fruits of your labor right away.
And above all else, remember that your home and your yard are supposed to bring you and your family life. Don’t let your list of things to-do keep you from doing those things outside that actually bring you life.
Now get out there and get ready to redeem your ground.