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May 4, 2011
It’s May! What to do in your garden now
Burpee  Edible Gardening Team Members

For most of the country, the weekend of Mother’s Day in May is a huge gardening kick-off: We shop for flower arrangements for the special mothers in our lives; buy gardening supplies as suitable presents; browse garden centers for colorful curb appeal; and spend quality time outdoors enjoying the fresh air during parties and barbeques.

With the month of May finally here, there are plenty of must-do tasks to perform in your garden. Granted, these tasks will vary based on the region you live, but the following reminders can apply to everyone, and will keep your garden looking healthy all season.

Continue to water regularly. “April showers bring May flowers” is true, and hydrated plants are healthy plants. This is especially true for containers. As the weather heats up and days lengthen, soil hydration will be important.

Weed your perennial veggies. Remove strangling weeds from Strawberries, Chives, Lavenders, and other extended season varieties. Pulling regularly by hand is best, or keep those cool-season vegetables free from weeds with a bit of mulch, newspaper or dry grass clippings.

Add in compost. A good dose of organics helps every garden thrive. The soil is also improved for proper root development and nutrient uptake.

Remove old growth. If your spring blooms and vegetables are past their prime, it’s time to remove them and get ready for the next round of plants. The foliage can stay as long as it’s green. Once the yellowing sets in cut them back and add them to your compost pile.

Want a more local gardening to-do list? Check out Marie Ianotti’s “Regional Gardening Almanac” at And be sure to sign up to receive timely, regional vegetable gardening tips from the In the Garden with Burpee.

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