Spring gardening checklist

By | Gardening How-Tos | Tags: , , , | March 27, 2013 | No comments

Enjoy the spring weather and get out into the garden. Here’s a month-by-month checklist of what you can be doing to prepare for another great season!


  • Clear leaf mulch from the crowns of perennials and wherever bulbs grow
  • Cut back dead stems of perennials
  • Plant bare-root plants once soil is workable
  • Press back perennials heaved by frost
  • Remove protective plant coverings, such as burlap and evergreen boughs
  • Top-dress beds with compost once the ground thaws


  • Cut back summer-blooming shrubs such as hydrangea
  • Divide summer- and fall-blooming perennials
  • Plant perennials, trees and shrubs
  • Prune vines such as wisteria, clematis and climbing roses
  • Weed


  • Continue weeding
  • Deadhead spring-flowering perennials
  • Divide spring-flowering perennials
  • Prune lavender when leaf buds break
  • Prune spring-flowering shrubs immediately after they bloom
  • Remove unwanted perennial seedlings
  • Watch for pests such as aphids

Photo: Janet Davis

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Paul Zammit about the author: Paul Zammit

Paul Zammit is the Nancy Eaton Director of Horticulture at the Toronto Botanical Garden. A graduate of the University of Guelph, Paul was formerly employed at Plant World, a large retail garden centre where he was the perennial department manager. He is a regular speaker at garden clubs and horticultural trade shows across Canada and in the United States. He has appeared both on television and in print.

TORONTO BOTANICAL GARDEN, 777 Lawrence Avenue East, Toronto, ON CANADA | 416-397-1341 | info@torontobotanicalgarden.ca