March can never be described as predictable. After Spring seemed to be rapidly unfolding; winter had more surprises up its sleeve; covering some parts of the country with snow and others battered by high winds and floods with Storm Ciara, Dennis and Jorge, reminding us to be cautious with our gardening practises...if we can get out there to do any gardening!
Even with weather challenges, many plants are looking spectacular at the moment. Magnolia buds have burst into flower, Camellia's put in a breathtaking colourful show and bulbs have gone ballistic!
Narcissus, muscari, and hyacinths are in full swing with tulips fast on the way. Green foliage is finally littered with colour.
So many shrubs and perennials are looking fabulous now. From Daphne to Arum italicum subsp. italicum ‘Marmoratum’ Euphorbia characias subsp. wulfenii, Skimmia japonica and Clematis armandii, flowers, foliage and scent flood the garden with many buds breaking leaf as with Acers.
Time for a satisfying Spring clean in the garden. Rake up fallen leaves to prevent fungal spores spreading but try and resist disturbing the soil too much if you do not need too. I discovered some incredible mycorrhizal fungi happily spreading its network of veins under years and years of leaf litter and some stunning gall covered leafs. Little miracles of nature hiding just below the surface.
Cut back the last of the herbaceous perennial old stems such as Hylotelephium spectabile
(formerly called Sedum spectabile) and dead head old seed heads such as hydrangeas