Phone: 410-250-0125 – Address: 200 125th St. – Ocean City, MD
by: Julie Golightly, CPH
- Now is the second best time to over seed lawns for repairs or to thicken
- Check the pH of lawn soil and adjust if needed – pH should be in the 6.0 – 7.0 range to maintain healthy turf
- If crabgrass was a problem last year, consider applying a pre-emergent herbicide in mid-March. If you are also re-seeding, be sure to select one labeled for use on new lawns, since pre-emergent herbicides kill growth sprouting from seed (including grass!). For chickweed, henbit and other broadleaf winter weeds, treat with an herbicide labeled for broadleaf weed control for lawns
- Plan on treating your lawn right this year. Sharpen lawn mower blades and service your mower. Keep mowing height at 3-4 inches and if watering, do so deeply and less frequently. You want to build strong, deep roots. These practices will reduce weeds, reduce the need for extra fertilizers and will build a healthy stand of roots and turf. This will greatly reduce the amount of fertilizers and herbicides needed
- Do not prune spring flowering shrubs or trees unless you are pruning for damage. Wait until after flowering to do ‘cosmetic’ or rejuvenating pruning
- Non-flowering trees and shrubs can be pruned before new growth. Remove dead, broken, or diseased branches and make any necessary cosmetic cuts
- Begin pruning roses in mid-March
- Plan on proper planting and transplanting methods. Avoid working with wet soil and planting in compacted or poor soil. Purchase plants with healthy root systems and avoid planting too deep. Stake any newly planted trees only if winds and soft, saturated soils leave them tilting
- Inspect for bagworms, and eggs of gypsy moths, Eastern tent caterpillars, and spider mites. If you notice infestations of scale insects on woody vegetation, treat with dormant horticultural oil. Spray only if temperatures are above 40degrees and temperatures remain above freezing for 24 hours
Herbaceous Ornamental Plants
- Cut back perennials and ornamental grasses to clean gardens and reduce harboring diseases and insects. Pull weeds and apply 2-3 inches of mulch
- Pansies are now becoming available in nurseries and are great for cool, wet spring conditions. Do not set out tender summer annuals until after the last frost
- Summer annuals can be started indoors by seed this month. Check seeds for germination times, etc.
- If you have unplanted spring bulbs that were stored in a cool place and are in good condition, plant them this month
- Begin cleaning out debris and leaves with a pond net to reduce algae problems
- Do not feed fish until water temperature is at least 50. Their metabolism shuts down in cooler temperatures and food will not digest resulting in illness or death
Soil, Mulch, and Compost
- Now is still a good time to have soil tested and amended. Only amend and incorporate materials when the soil is dry enough to work
- Do not aerate, dig, or disturb soil when wet. This leads to greater compaction and doing so can result in long term damage of soil structure.
- If you have not mulched your garden, apply mulch now to protect plant crowns and shallow root systems from severe cold weather injury
- Avoid the use of excess fertilizers. Most plants get adequate nutrition from healthy soil rich with organic matter
- Apply mulch at 2-3 inches and keep away from direct contact with shrub and tree trunks. Do not build mulch volcanoes around trees!
- Mix or turn compost piles to speed decomposition. If your pile is overly wet, incorporate straw, leaves, or shredded newspaper. Compost piles should be at least one cubic yard to heat up properly
Vegetable and Herb Gardening
This is a good time to incorporate organic matter into your vegetable garden
- Complete your garden plans and order seeds
Potatoes, onions, peas, leeks, beets, kale, and turnips can be planted as soon as the soil can be worked
Start other tender greens indoors and prepare to plant in 2-3 weeks
- Herb seeds such as rosemary, thyme, sage, basil, lavender and tarragon can be started indoors in late March to be set outdoors in May
OCBC was happy to once again host a luncheon for the park workers who worked so hard getting our Northside Park ready for Winterfest. This year we celebrated the attendance was an all time high.
We had homemade soup, sandwiches, salads, chips, soft drinks, desserts and a great time. See pictures
Ocean City Beautification Committee was pleased to have a display at the Mayor and City Council 19th Open House at the Roland E. Powell Convention Center.
It was fun looking through old scrapbooks with pictures of pass activities. We had a banner given to us by the Arbor Day Foundation for 25 year of service. We had a poster showing some of our projects.
The water feature the workers are building at the entrance of the convention is being paid for from our Reflections of Life project.
2014 Decorating City Hall
Ocean City Beautification Committee recently added a lovely new pergola at City Hall.