Your early spring gardening to-do list

It’s March and it's getting busy out there in the garden. As you can see, Joff has been pruning the roses in the Genus garden.  Here are our top 10 jobs for you to do now.
  1. By the end of the month, prune late flowering clematis (Class 3) such as ‘Jackmanii’ to 15-20 cm from the ground.
  2. Prune your bush and shrub roses with sharp secateurs, removing crossing or dead branches, then cutting back to strong stems just above an outward-facing bud. Hydrangeas can also be pruned now, removing around one third of last season’s growth.
  3. Move shrubs and trees that have outgrown their spot, taking as large a root ball as you can. This is also the last chance to plant bare root trees and shrubs so they can get established before the warmer weather.
  4. Mulch bare soil in beds and borders with a thick layer of organic matter such as well rotten manure to stop soil losing water as the weather warms up, watering first if it’s dry.
  5. Feed soil with an organic fertiliser, such as chicken pellets or blood, fish and bone. Give roses a special rose feed or a balanced fertiliser.
  6. Create new plants by dividing overgrown clumps of perennials, teasing the roots apart with two forks back to back.
  7. Plant summer-flowering bulbs such as gladioli and deadhead daffodils, letting the foliage die back.
  8. Start mowing the lawn on dry days on a high setting and re-seed bare patches.
  9. Sow and plant sweet peas outdoors in southern parts and sow hardy annuals outside.
  10. Keep a look out for slugs especially after rain - they love juicy new growth. Use nematodes for an effective organic control.