Today’s blogging prompt involves the number four in any form… four seasons, four cardinal directions, four suits in a deck of cards, four basic mathematical functions, four elements (earth, wind, air, and fire), and so forth. I thought about things that come in four and decided to talk about the four basic mathematical functions, as related to gardening.
The area that I live in in Western New York is USDA zone 6a. It is a temperate climate with four very distinct seasons. The best time to plant here is at the end of May. It’s fast approaching. Here are some things that you can do for your garden this year. They involve all of those mathematical functions (addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division).
I live in an area with a lot of clay soil. One of the benefits of clay soil is that it holds nutrients really well. Sandy soil, for example, does not do that. The water and other nutrients just go right through it. But clay soil can be problematic. Drainage can be terrible. After a heavy rain, you will see a lot of flooding. This could result in your garden being underwater, which is never desirable.
It’s time to clean out the garden. There are plenty of things to be removed (subtracted) from your garden spot. If you covered your garden with a layer of leaves, you can take those leaves out now. You can dig out the weeds and prune dead branches from shrubbery. If your shrubbery has blossoms, make sure that the blossoms are gone before you go crazy with those pruners. Shrubbery that does not have blossoms can be pruned now. If you have shrubbery that tends to grow tall and block your sightlines through your windows, you’re going to want to prune with much gusto.
Spring is a good time to divide your hostas. They are still small and much easier to divide. When you dig up parts of the hostas, make sure to get as much of the root ball as you can. You can either plant the hostas in a different part of your garden or you can share them with friends and family. Hostas love shade so they are another option for planting under a tree or another shady spot.