Top Ten Gardening Tips For March

Lift and divide congested clumps of perennials. Weed, feed and mulch. Plant geraniums, astrantia, oriental poppies and grasses while the weather is cool and moist.

Now that the lawn is coming to life again it is the time to get it into good condition. Make any repairs that are needed, brush off worm casts regularly, aerate with a hollow-finer, re-seed any bare patches, feed with a spring fertilizer and mow if the grass is growing.

Brighten up your containers with spring bedding plants such as double daisies, primulas, forget-me-nots and wallflowers which are tough and long-flowering. Deadhead winter pansies to encourage new flowers.

Clean patios and decking so that you will be ready for al fresco living.

If your lawn is looking beyond repair, consider having an artificial turf lawn laid – they can look like the real thing and are totally maintenance free. There’s a great artificial grass supplier in Stevenage at ArtificialGrassTurfSolutions.co.uk, so why not get a new synthetic lawn laid and never have to worry about keeping your lawn in shape again.

Protect the blooms of camellias, rhododendrons and azaleas by placing containers in a sheltered spot away from the early morning sun.

Prune your summer-flowering shrubs such as buddleia, hydrangea and hardy fuchsias and  trim winter-flowering heathers to remove dead blooms but do not cut into the dead wood. Prune early flowering shrubs like forsythia as their display finishes.

Divide clumps of perennial herbs such as chives, sage, thyme and mint. Sow parsley, chervil, chives, fennel and marjoram. Coriander can be sown under cover. Buy young plants of mint, tarragon, thyme and rosemary which are more difficult to grow from seed.

Deadhead daffodils individually as the flowers fade and die. Leave the stalks and leaves to die down naturally. With hyacinths, strip off the small blooms one by one as the stem continues to manufacture food in the same way as the leaves. Never knot or cut off bulb foliage until it turns yellow. This will be about six weeks after flowering.

This is the main pruning season for all roses apart from ramblers. Remove any dead, diseased or damaged stems in March starting with climbers and then move on to shrub roses. If it is mild, feed your roses late in the month with a balanced dry fertiliser or a rose feed, hoeing or raking it into the surface of the soil.

Summer-flowering clematis that blossom on the current season’s growth need to have last year’s growth pruned out now. Also prune deciduous climbers like winter jasmine and honeysuckle. Plant new climbers early before the weather becomes warm and dry.