Garden Checklist for March

Dr. William C. Welch
Professor and Landscape Horticulturist

Check with your local county agent for the average last killing freeze date for your area. Killing freezes can and do occur after this date, but it will be a good indication.

Prepare beds for planting warm-season flowers and vegetables.

For early color in the landscape, try some of the following annuals as transplants: ageratums, cockscombs, coreopsis, cosmos, cleomes, marigolds, nasturtiums, petunias, phlox, portulacas, salvias, sweet alyssums, sunflowers, and zinnias.

Start hanging baskets of petunias and other annuals for another dimension in landscape color.

Select and order caladium tubers as well as geranium and coleus plants for late April and early May planting. Do not plant caladiums until soil temperatures reach 70 degrees F.

As camellia and azalea plants finish blooming, fertilize them with three pounds of azalea-camellia fertilizer per 100 square feet of bed area. Check mulch on azalea and camellia beds and add where needed.

Beware of close-out sales on bare-root trees and shrubs. The chance of survival is rather low on bare-root plants this late in the season. Your best bet at this time of year is to depend on container-grown or balled-and-burlapped plants for landscape use.

In North Texas there is still time to plant seeds of your favorite annuals in flats to be transplanted out-of-doors when danger of frost is past.

Fertilize roses every 4 to 6 weeks from now until September. The traditional heavy pruning practices are appropriate for Hybrid Teas, but most antique and shrub roses require less severe methods. Weak or dead canes should be removed or shortened to healthy tissue any time during the year.

This article appeared in the March 2000 issue of Lawn and Garden Update, edited by Dr. Douglas F. Welsh, and produced by Extension Horticulture, Texas Agricultural Extension Service, The Texas A&M University System, College Station, Texas.

Return to March 2000 Lawn and Garden Update Index