Top tips for your garden in March

Give a light long cut to lawns if necessary, on a dry windy day.

March is a good time to re-define lawn edges with a half-moon cutter, where they have grown out of line or have been trodden down. Small amounts of turf can be chopped up with a spade and put into the compost heap.

Pruning and Training

Pruning time again. Cut hard back buddleias and the purple- or yellow-leaved elders, to produce long wands of new growth as the season progresses.

Thin out and shorten back the stems of the bushy Spiraea ‘Goldflame’, which will then produce a more telling first flush of coppery young shoots.

For a more stylish effect, established clumps of tall bamboos can be thinned out now, taking out up to a third of the older canes at ground level. This makes space for new canes, and lets more light into the clump which in turn brings out the markings and colours on the stems.

Time to plant or transplant evergreens again, now that the soil is warming up but before buds have begun to burst. Water them well, especially in windy weather, until they are re-established. This is the time to put in conifer hedges.

Pots of daffodils can be put into the garden after flowering. Remember the scented Paper white narcissi need a hot sunny spot to flower again, not shade under trees.

Cut back indoor fuchsias and pelargoniums, and water only lightly until growth begins again.

Patio pots of agapanthus can be given water again and a top-dressing of general fertiliser. Potted lilies can be repotted in fresh compost and watered lightly until growth recommences.

Tidy up evergreen ornamental grasses and sedges, pulling out dead leaves, and shortening back the remainder a little. Feed with a general fertiliser.

Kitchen Garden
Plant new raspberries and feed and mulch old raspberry canes.

Mulch strawberry plants with old compost.

In mild gardens or under cloches the first carrots chard and broad beans can be sown outside.

Sow onions, leeks and celery indoors.

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