Tending The Garden This Week

If you have not done so yet, it is time to cut back your monkey grass or liriope.

Make sure when you are cutting back your monkey grass this late that you cut it high enough so you do not clip off the top of the new leaves coming out.

This is a week to get lots of things done between rains. I am late cutting back my monkey grass, so I am having to just tip it so I will not injure the new leaves coming out. Also all the damaged leaves of my cast iron plant are being removed at the ground, as the new leaves will be coming out soon. Since my flowering quince and forsythia are finished blooming, it is time to remove the long unwanted branches by cutting them back to the ground. If you have just been topping them for years, I suggest that you cut them back to about a foot above the ground and allow them to grow back to their natural, free-form shape. Remember, most spring flowering shrubs should be pruned after flowering, but never clip them in squares or round balls. Winter weeds that were not controlled in the garden are growing rapidly now, so they need to be removed either with a spot herbicide spray or by hand pulling (be sure and get the roots). Most garden weeds need to be pulled or killed before they bloom to prevent a repeat preformance next year. Finally, it is not too late to put out transplants of cole crops, onion sets, and seed things like lettuce, kale, and spinach. Happy gardening and welcome to early spring, but I expect many more freezing nights.

John Floyd

John Floyd has been gardening--and learning about Birmingham area gardening--for more than 30 years. In addition to his day-to-day experience, John has degrees in horticulture from Auburn and Clemson Universities and was Editor-in-Chief of Southern Living.

4 thoughts on “Tending The Garden This Week

  1. Thank you for the tips. I did not know about cutting the forsythia to the ground after flowering. We still have snow over here in BC but will definitely cut back. I find your postings helpful. Thank you.

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