March Gardening Magic: Nurturing Your Calgary Garden


by Carolyn, Calgary’s Home Gardener Helper

March in Calgary signals the slow but steady awakening of the garden from its winter slumber. As the city experiences a transition from winter to spring, gardeners can leverage the changing weather to kickstart their gardening endeavours. Here’s a guide on what Calgary gardeners should focus on in March.

  1. Soil Assessment and Preparation: Snow farming in Southern Alberta involves strategically managing snow accumulation in the winter to serve as a water resource during dry periods. With Agriculture Canada predicting drought-like conditions in 2024, snow farming becomes crucial for sustaining moisture in your soil. Stored snow provides essential moisture for plants, mitigating the impact of water scarcity.
  2. Indoor Seed Starting: March is a prime time for indoor seed starting in Calgary. Start seeds for vegetables, annuals, and herbs indoors, taking advantage of the longer days. While outdoor conditions may still be unpredictable, nurturing seeds indoors ensures they’re ready for transplanting when the frosty days subside.
  3. Pruning and Grooming: Before the growing season gains full momentum, Calgary gardeners should engage in pruning and grooming tasks. Trim dormant trees and shrubs to encourage healthy growth, removing any dead or damaged branches. Groom perennial plants by cutting back dead foliage and inspecting for signs of winter stress.
  4. Plan and Design: The fluctuating weather in March makes it an ideal month for garden planning. Calgary gardeners can use this time to finalize garden layouts, considering factors like sunlight exposure, wind patterns, and plant placement. A well-thought-out plan ensures a harmonious and visually appealing garden.
  5. Weather Watch for Frost: Calgary’s March can bring occasional frosty nights. Keep a vigilant eye on weather forecasts and be prepared to protect tender plants if temperatures dip unexpectedly. Covering plants with frost blankets or using other protective measures can safeguard them from late-season frost.

In conclusion, Calgary gardeners can make the most of March by aligning their activities with the unique cycle of weather conditions found in this transitional month. We must embrace the opportunities that this month present with the optimism of the approaching garden season.