Why I delay the spring cleaning of my balcony garden
Seed, curd, remove dead plant remains: In the past few days I have made my balcony garden fit for the new season. And it was almost a bit too early.
Lately, I’ve been trying to get some order on the balcony and to motivate myself a little. Say: What is still there, what can go away? And above all: What is missing?
My balcony garden always looks a bit sad in the first weeks of the year. While primroses and daffodils bloom in my neighbors garden, I have a few green tufts peering out from under the dried remains of the previous year.
Because autumn is not really a time for tidying up and the balcony garden is only made winterproof to a limited extent – and for good reason.
Plant sprouting and germination
Similarly, I also explain my inactivities in February, March and even the first half of April: The
fact that I don’t bring gloves and shovels, seeds and young plants outside early on has only limited to do with laziness. Also, this year I had to buy a new hose and if you’re in the market for one – I would highly recommend reading this article from Helpful Garden on the best hoses.
After all, the plants have enough time to sprout again or to develop from the seeds, which I (also) left in autumn for this reason.
Leaves protect on cold nights
On the parsley and on the garlic I could observe best how they developed new plants under the remainders from the previous year.
The dry leaves not only protected them from hungry birds but also on cold nights in the first months of spring – and there are still a few left until mid-May. They also formed a small mulch layer that prevented the water from evaporating so quickly during the sunny hours.
I removed the remains only now, because the plants had developed well, showed first leaves ready for harvesting and looked quite strong.
Providing shelter for insects for a long time
During the winter I also let the stems of the annual plants dry out and did not cut back the perennials. My hope: that insects will hide in it or lay eggs in it.
And I didn’t want to wake up these subtenants too early with my spring cleaning or chase them out of the nursery. After all, I am counting on their help this season – for example when it comes to aphids!
A clever decision, as Marja Rottleb from the German Nature Conservation Union (NABU) confirmed.
So, I take it easy during spring. The fact that I have a lot to do and hardly any time for the balcony garden certainly suits me.