While many of us are stuck at home due to the precautions being taken to prevent the spread of COVID-19, we may begin to feel a little anxious and unproductive. Thankfully for homeowners and house-renters, we have a whole house and property to tend to as the days go by and the weather begins to improve. One thing we can tend to right now is our yard.
Is it safe to go outside? Yes! Experts agree that it’s not only safe but healthy for all of us participating in social distancing to get outside, breathe in the fresh air, and get our hands in the dirt if the weather allows it. As long as we are keeping a physical distance of at least 6 feet from our neighbors, spending time in your yard is healthy and safe.
Yard work is a great form of exercise if your gym is closed and you don’t own any home fitness machines. Raking, weeding, tilling, trimming–all these “chores” stimulate blood flow and get your heart beating. Even better, if you can get your hands in the dirt some studies have shown that contact with the soil can even boost your immune system.
What can you do for your garden now?
Clean up: Unfortunately for many of us living in cities and close residential neighborhoods, a lot of trash is revealed when the snow melts. Be sure to pick up any trash that has found its way into your garden beds, your lawn, and elsewhere in your neighborhood if you’re feeling helpful (many of us in isolation will have time for this that we usually don’t have!).
Weeding: In addition to picking up any wayward litter, if the soil is loose enough now is a good time to pull weeds as well. They will be brittle and weak from the winter, so get them up now before they start to spring back to life again!
Mulching: If you are not already doing so, you should try to maintain a layer of mulch in your garden beds. Mulch does a great many things besides making your gardens look nice: it also prevents weed seeds and spores from landing in your soil as well as maintaining a moist, loose soil.
What can you do for your lawn now?
Fluff it up: A light raking is a great way to start the spring season. The goal is to “fluff up” the grass so that it’s not matted or bent over–just enough to loosen up the blades and give them breathing room. This will allow sunlight to penetrate all the way down to the ground, warming the soil and killing off any mold or fungus that may want to develop in the close, moist conditions of a post-winter lawn.
Seeding: Since the snow is melted up north, pretty much everyone is now able to over-seed their lawns right now. The next few weeks of rain (and possibly more snow) will help to sink those seeds into the soil, where they will root and germinate as the warm weather returns. This kind of seeding takes very little effort and is the perfect way to take advantage of the muddy soil.
Soil Amendments: If you have any of our Aerify PLUS, now is a great time to apply it. Aerify PLUS is an all natural liquid soil conditioner–a liquid aerator that eliminates any need for messy, expensive mechanical aeration. Aerify PLUS will not only break apart clay soil, it will also restructure the soil to make more nutrients available to grass roots, tree roots, and any other plant you put in your soil.
Come back soon for tips on preparing your garden for spring planting!