Rainy days can put a damper on the enthusiasm that comes with early spring. But a little rain shouldn’t keep you from taking care of some important indoor tasks that need attention. Addressing these activities now will help you get a jump on the season and be well prepared when the peak of summer is upon us.
- First of all, avoid the temptation to just bundle up and start working in the rain. Walking on or turning over wet soil can actually damage its structure, and could lead to compaction as the soil begins to dry out.
- If you haven’t already planted some seeds indoors, rainy days are a perfect time to do this. Check our helpful guide to starting plants from seeds.
- Clear out your bird feeders and fill them with fresh seed. Wet seed encourages mold, which can make birds sick. To avoid wasting birdseed in future, fill the feeder only partially.
- Sharpen and clean your pruners and other garden tools. Sort out any broken tools and see what can be repaired and what should be replaced.
- While you’re at it, take some time to organize your tool shed, basement or whatever area you normally stash your stuff. As much as possible, aim to hang your long-handled tools against a wall. Sort hand tools into a bucket or basket. As you sort, examine the tools for damage, clean them and sharpen those that need it.
- Take stock of that ever-growing pile of flowerpots and decide which ones are worth keeping. Dump out any old soil and wash the pots with warm water and a bit of soap, if necessary. Let them dry out thoroughly before stacking or re-using.
- Think back to last year and make an inventory of the garden supplies you used most often that might need replenishing now (e.g., peat pots, potting mix, cotton twine, gardening gloves). Stock up now so you won’t have to worry about running out later on.
- If you have been dreaming about building raised beds, nothing beats a rainy day to get those plans going. Sketch out the size and shape you want, then head to the building centre or lumber yard to get the supplies you’ll need. Make sure you use untreated wood to avoid having chemicals leach into your garden soil.
- While you’re planning your raised beds, take the time to sketch out the rest of your garden as well. Make sure you rotate crops so things aren’t growing in the exact same place they were last year. Think also about your own convenience – an easy garden is a happy garden!