Garden tips for March

The new season starts in earnest this month. Nature stirs into growth as the weather improves and the soil warms. Drifts of bright yellow Daffodils proclaim that spring is really here. Follow the expert tips below to get your garden into shape for the months ahead.

Terrace Garden

  • Plant pots, hanging baskets and window boxes with a cheerful display of early season bedding plants including Pansies, Violas and potted bulbs.
  • One of the most economical way to fill your tubs and baskets with colour this coming summer, is to grow your own bedding plants from young plants, pre-ordered now for direct delivery to your home or chosen from our comprehensive range in-store now. Plant up immediately into small pots to grow on in a warm frost-free greenhouse or conservatory.
  • Spring clean the terrace with a jet-wash and take the opportunity to give the fence a fresh coat of stain for the new season.

Beds and Borders

  • Hoe borders to remove weeds, applying a think layer of mulch over the surface to lock in moisture and help keep weeds at bay. Mulch, such as garden compost or well-rotted manure, also helps to improve the soil and give plants a well-needed spring boost.
  • Feed borders with a general-purpose fertiliser, applied and lightly forked in as per the manufacturer’s instructions. Don’t forget to feed your hedges too.
  • Winter flowering Heathers that have started to fade can be lightly trimmed now with a pair of shears, to help keep them tidy and compact.
  • Prune summer flowering shrubs, such as Buddleia, Lavatera and hardy Fuchsias now to allow for fresh new growth bearing this year’s flowers.
  • Deciduous grasses left uncut for their winter display should be cut back now to make way for striking fresh new foliage.
  • Continue to plant new hedges, trees and shrubs. See our comprehensive range of British grown trees and hedging plants, available online for direct delivery from the nursery to your home.

Cottage Garden

  • Lift and divide congested or over-large cottage garden plants. Splitting every few years also helps to re-invigorate tired or old plants.
  • Plant new cottage garden plants now. Planted now they will establish quickly to put on a good display in the summer. See in-store for our extensive range of British grown 1 litre plants, great value for early spring planting.
  • Position plant supports around any existing clumps already bursting into spring growth. By doing so now the overall look is more natural and any plant damage avoided.
  • Hardy annuals such as Nigella, Centaurea and Calendula can be sown now, in gaps where they are intended to flower. For a natural look, broadcast sow seed in good-sized drifts.
  • Sweet Peas can be sown outside now too, ready for picking later in the summer after earlier sowings have finished flowering, extending the cutting season.
  • Plant summer flowering bulbs, such as Gladiolus and Ranunculus. Visit your local store for a wide choice of top quality bulbs, including a range of specially selected bulb collections in irresistible colour themes sure to bring fragrance and flower colour to your summer garden.
  • Dahlias and Begonias should also be started into growth now under the protection of a frost-free greenhouse. See our extensive range on-line.
  • If you haven't done so already, finish any pruning of roses before any new season leaves start to unfurl. Top dress with mulch and feed for the new season.
  • Cut back stems of autumn flowering Clematis to the lowest pair of strong buds.
  • As daffodils and Narcissi start to fade, remove spent flowers but leave the foliage to die back naturally. This will focus all the energy back into the bulb for the following year.

Fruit Garden

  • Plant Soft Fruit now, such as Raspberries, Blackcurrants and Blueberries. Visit your local store to see our extensive range or visit our website for on-line delivery direct from the nursery to your home.
  • Mulch existing rows of Raspberry canes and fruit bushes.
  • Plant Rhubarb remembering to allow enough room for them to develop to their full size. Add a thick layer of mulch around your new plant to help retain moisture and keep weeds at bay.
  • Protect blossom of Apricots, Peaches and Nectarines from any late frosts.

Vegetable Garden

  • If you haven't done so already, prepare vegetable beds for spring planting by removing weeds and forking plenty of garden compost or well-rotted manure. To help the soil to warm up quicker, consider covering prepared beds with sheets of black plastic. These will also help to keep the soil drier, for easier seed sowing.
  • As weather and soil conditions allow, plant shallots, onions and early potatoes. Visit your local store and chose from our extensive range of varieties, including up to 40 varieties of Scottish grown seed potatoes. 
  • If space allows, consider planting an Asparagus bed. One of the most prized of all vegetables, once established they reward you with a spring bounty of delicious spears for many years to come.
  • Keep an eye out for slugs. Apply nematodes to the surrounding soil as an effective organic control.


  • Continue to prick out and pot on seedlings and cuttings.
  • Pot up and grow on young plants of your chosen summer bedding plants ready to plant out when all risk of frost has past. Growing from the young plug plant stage is an economical way to raise good numbers of plants and is ideal for those who didn’t get round to sowing seed in good time earlier in the season.
  • Sow tender annuals in a heated propagator. Visit your local store for an extensive range to choose from.

Lawn Care

  • Depending on soil conditions, prepare new lawn areas for sowing in April. Once cultivated, make sure the area is firmed and level ready for sowing.
  • Alternatively for quicker results lay new turf, leaving it undisturbed for a few weeks to allow the new roots to establish.
  • Straighten lawn edges.
  • Later in the month apply a spring/summer lawn feed high in nitrogen.
  • If mild enough, and the lawn is showing signs of growth, give it the first light cut of the season, keeping blades on their highest setting.

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