Spring in Minnesota is notoriously unpredictable. Some years, snow continues to cling to the ground long into April.
Other years we experience 70-degree weather and green grass by mid-March.
Still, there are some things you can do to get your yard ready for the growing season throughout the various stages of spring, regardless of when spring begins!
Here is a spring yard cleanup checklist to give your yard a clean start:
- Remove any debris that may have accumulated over the winter.
- Collect and compost fallen leaves and twigs.
- Don’t have a compost pile? Start one! For tips, check out the University of Minnesota’s guide on backyard composting.
- Get your hand tools and yard machines ready for the season by cleaning sharpening and getting them serviced.
- Sharpen mower blades.
- Rinse out salt from the soil around areas that are exposed to high salt use during the winter months.
- Prune out any broken, diseased or dead limbs from trees and shrubs. Check out our guide to proper Pruning Procedures to see if you’re doing it right.
- Cut back last season’s perennial foliage and divide perennials to thin crowded beds. Prune flowering perennials down to 4-5 inches in height and ornamental grasses down to 2-3 inches.
- Add a fresh 2-3 inch layer to the base of plants, trees, and shrubs, if the old mulch is getting thin. Not mulching yet? Why not start this spring? Simply add a 2-3 inch layer of bark mulch to the base of your plants, trees, and shrubs. Check out our guide on the Mulching Benefits for Trees and how to mulch properly.
- Fertilize growing trees, shrubs and plants. Be sure you don’t forget the containerized planters. However, you may want to hold off on fertilizing your lawn until after your first spring mowing.
- Lightly rake away snow mold.
- Address any vole or mole damage that you may have.
- Rake out dog spots.
Being proactive early this spring will help you get this year off to a good start. Keep your yard looking good before the full force of the growing season descends upon us like a lion. Most importantly, remember that spring cleaning starts after snow has melted and the ground has thawed.