Gardening in Colorado can be challenging. The high altitude (elevations in Douglas County range from 5,000 to 8,000ft), the drying winds, the unpredictable weather, and the heavy clay soils can make even the most stalwart gardener through up their hands in despair. The variability of the terrain in our area creates disparate microclimates – one type of plant may be fabulous in a neighbor’s yard but fail miserably in yours.
The key to gardening in our region is working with the climate and landscape instead of against it. We have more sun then most places on earth, low humidity that keeps most diseases at bay, and cool nights that create ideal growing conditions for many plants – they just might not be the same plants that grow in most other places. While rhododendrons, hydrangeas, and boxwood are just not cut out for our conditions there are many great plants that are. CSU Extension can help you to discover the plants that work in Douglas County and give advice on how to maintain and care for your yard.
Master Gardeners provide useful information to help your gardening efforts all year long.
Spring Is In The Air!
Below, you will find reminders, tips, and useful links to help you prepare for emerging perennials, warmer weather, and sunsets on the deck.
Watering: Due to our semi-arid climate, desiccating winds, intense sunshine, and extended periods without moisture, it is often necessary to water manually when your sprinklers are valved off. Keep an eye on your trees, shrubs, perennials, and turf, especially those facing south. If your soil is dry and the weather is nice, at least 40°F, then consider watering mid-day with a garden hose, soaker hose, sprinkler, pail, or watering can. Click here to learn more about Winter Watering.
Garden Tools Maintenance: This is a great time of year to inventory your garden tools. Have you been good? Are there any tools you wish you had? Here is one of my favorites.
If no shopping is required, you may still need to sharpen your tools. You can do this yourself or take them to a professional. The garden centers usually offer this service. You can find a list of local garden centers below.
Lawn Maintenance: Does your turf need help? It may be time to aerate, overseed, and fertilize. Learn how to renovate your lawn.
Pre-emergents: Are you sick of weeding? If you aren’t growing your plants from seed, then you may want to consider using a pre-emergent. Pre-emergents are herbicides, so keep that in mind before you buy, and be sure to follow the label. They inhibit, and mostly prevent, seeds from emerging. March is a great time to scatter pre-emergent in your flower garden. Your desired plants will thrive and your back will thank you. Instead of gloves on your hands, you’ll have time. Time to sit back and enjoy your beautiful gardens.
Do you enjoy the great outdoors? Would you like to learn more about some native plants that call Douglas County home? Here are a few to watch for between now & May. I already found my 1st Spring Beauty on Sunday, February 8th. It was on a south facing slope in Sedalia, just west of here, but still in Douglas County.