5 Steps to Getting Your Garden Ready for Spring: $100 Sweepstakes

This post is sponsored by First Editions® Plants and SheKnows Media.

How do you get your garden ready for spring, or even start a garden at all? Don't worry - we're the garden experts here! Here are my 5 steps to getting that garden ready this year. #ad

As you know, our garden is sort of our crowning glory of our property and yard!

I remember the first time I saw it, and it was nothing special then. It was September and the previous owners were moving, so the garden hadn’t been tended in ages. And yet, I saw a beautiful eggplant bursting through – large and ripe – and knew this land was the place for us. The sun was shining through the windows and into the paths of the woods, and we put an offer on the house that same day, if I remember correctly! And luckily it got accepted, and we became home and garden owners! This was perfect timing because Scarlet was two at that point, and I was pregnant with Des the same week we got our offer accepted. We knew we were at the start of something special. It’s been a wonderful learning experience since.

I wasn’t born with a green thumb. My mom said I used to help her plant peas at our old house, and I somewhat remember that, but I have learned the most through Cassidy. I remember when he separated his shoulder and couldn’t do much, so I installed the garden’s irrigation system. We’ve done pallet gardening and vertical strawberry rows. We have planted trees, berries, and vegetables. Lately, we’ve been super into shrubs and trees, and that’s been part of our recent projects.

Every year is a chance to start over. So whether you’re starting a brand new garden, starting a brand new project in a garden, or just doing things completely differently, here are 5 steps to getting your garden ready this spring:

1 – Cleanup time! This is always the first because fall and winter do a real number on our land. Cassidy will first clear all the garden beds and pallets and then sweep the branches, leaves, and garbage that has collected on the lawn.

2 – Tool time! Your tools have been sitting around for 9 months or so. You have to make sure they’re ready for the job by cleaning them with soap and water and making sure the handles won’t give you splinters. Maybe invest in new ones.

3 – Soil time! A big part of the cleanup is that bulbs are going to burst out any day now. You also want your soil ready for new growth. Turn the soil over and clear out any weeds. We add fresh compost that we buy a few weeks before planting.

4 – Layout time! We actually make charts to see which fruits, vegetables, flowers, trees, and plants are will work well in certain light conditions, and also next to each other. For this, we often turn to the experts at the garden center.

5 – Shopping, planting and maintenance time! Shopping is my personal favorite, although planting is fun too! This year I was all about beautifying our garden with First Editions® Plants. Since Cassidy is traveling for most of this spring, I had to find a solution so that I could upkeep our garden. I love that I found a solution at our local garden center last week.

First Editions® Plants are easy-to-care for shrubs and plants. They create a vibrant and gratifying outdoor space, and are the perfect solution for hopeful gardeners who maybe don’t have a ton of time or help in the garden. I have Little Devil™ Ninebark, Amber Jubilee™ Ninebark, and Strawberry Sundae® Hydrangea. They have 125+ plant varieties! Just look for the purple pot and enjoy their premium assortment of shrubs and trees. I took such care in my selections for our garden:

First Editions® Plants are selected for success! They have been rigorously tested so I feel confident they will flourish this season. I love the wide variety and how much fun it was to find shrubs and colors for our garden. And, they have a guru who can help you with anything gardening. Check “Let’s Ask Amy” out here. And I know I had mentioned about pairing plants together, but here’s a wonderful reference for how to pair your plants. Isn’t it wonderful to simplify the beauty of gardening?

How do you get your garden ready for spring, or even start a garden at all? Don't worry - we're the garden experts here! Here are my 5 steps to getting that garden ready this year. #ad

How do you get your garden ready for spring, or even start a garden at all? Don't worry - we're the garden experts here! Here are my 5 steps to getting that garden ready this year. #ad

How do you get your garden ready for spring, or even start a garden at all? Don't worry - we're the garden experts here! Here are my 5 steps to getting that garden ready this year. #ad

Want to get First Editions® Plants for your outdoor space? Find out where you can buy them here.

What plants are you most excited to grow this spring? Answer in the comments for a chance to win a $100 gift card!

Entry Instructions:
No duplicate comments.
You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:
1. Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post
2. Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “#Sweeps” and “#SweepstakesEntry”; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post
3. Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post
This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older (or nineteen (19) years of age or older in Alabama and Nebraska). Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. The notification email will come directly from SheKnows via the sweeps@sheknows.com. You will have 2 business days to respond; otherwise a new winner will be selected.
The Official Rules are available here.
This sweepstakes runs from 5/14/18- 5/20/18

Be sure to visit the brand page on Sheknowsmedia.com where you can read other bloggers’ posts!

How do you get your garden ready for spring, or even start a garden at all? Don't worry - we're the garden experts here! Here are my 5 steps to getting that garden ready this year. #ad

How do you get your garden ready for spring?

Creative Gardening: How to Make a Vertical Pallet Garden

I have received information and materials from ©Johnson & Johnson Consumer Inc. 2017.The opinions stated are my own. This is a sponsored post. #ForWhatMattersMost #CollectiveBias

This is a creative & rather genius way to garden w/ vertical pallets. It's easy to do, fun, & beautiful in your yard #DIY #Gardening #ad #ForWhatMattersMost

Brace yourselves, for a ton of photos and a ton of excitement, because I love strawberry gardening!

Gardening is more Cassidy’s forte, as you probably know. Sometimes, he works hard at it, and sometimes he skips a year. No matter if it’s an on or off year, our strawberry plants still bloom every year – so ripe and red, organic and juicy, and sweet.

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Last year was an off year, and the original 150+ strawberry plants bloomed, but they had grown out of control, and we didn’t stay on top of picking them all in a timely way. We both had work, and the kids had camp. We traveled and went on road trips. It’s mostly my favorite part of the day – to go outside with a bowl or basket – and pick way more strawberries than we can ever eat. The overflow goes into fun recipes, or we gift whole pints or gallons to loved ones. It’s awesome – being this Strawberry Fairy. We decided this year is an ON year, and found a way to upgrade our overflowing plants.

genius gardening technique

In 2013, we planted the 150 plants in boxes. It was an effective method, but not yet time-tested. The wood wasn’t pressure-treated (more on that later) and was starting to rot in the last year. The soil level was going down and we’d get critters – like moles, bugs, and slugs – coming up into the plants. The strawberries would rot before we could pick them.

As you can see from this below photo from when they were new, it was effective for a few years!

pallet garden

This new method blows it out of the water! It is an easy-to-follow process, and you definitely get into a rhythm with the work, so you’ll want to be prepared to take on this sort of activity. Now that spring is really here, I find that activities and tasks are harder on our bodies. We’ve been out of practice! Not only that, this is WORK. It’s fun, rewarding, meditative, connective, and inspiring work – but you’ll want to figure out how to make it even better for you. For me, it’s a no-brainer.

I go to Target (otherwise known as my second home) and get TYLENOL® 8 HR Muscle Aches & Pain. Trust me when I say that you can easily spend eight hours (or more) enjoying and perfecting your strawberry garden. I’ve walked away with hand blisters, pulled muscles, soreness from squatting and kneeling, and other aches and pains. I know what to reach for:

pallet garden

strawberry plants

And right now there’s a gift card offer at Target! Buy 2 of the following products (listed HERE) and get a $5 gift card to Target. To get the $5 gift card, buy Extra Strength TYLENOL® – 100 ct or 225 ct, TYLENOL® 8 HR Muscle Aches & Pain – 100 ct, and/or Extra Strength TYLENOL® Rapid Release Gels – 100 ct or 225 ct!

This is a creative & rather genius way to garden w/ vertical pallets. It's easy to do, fun, & beautiful in your yard #DIY #Gardening #ad #ForWhatMattersMost

TYLENOL® 8 HR Muscle Aches & Pain helps you take control of your muscle pain, and therefore take back your day! It temporarily relieves minor aches and pains due to muscular aches, backaches, minor arthritis pain, toothaches, premenstrual and menstrual cramps, headaches, and common colds – and temporarily reduces fever too! Remember, TYLENOL® 8 HR Muscle Aches & Pain is for adults and children 12 years and older. Use only as directed.

pallet garden

Perfect, right? I love how it inspires me to do even MORE gardening!

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Now here’s how to make your own vertical pallet garden! We used ours for strawberries, but you could do other plants too:

What You Need:

  • Pallets – we used ones that are 48″ high by 45″ wide. We asked for the bottom slats to be left off so they have 12″ of “post” which can go into the ground. If you are using reclaimed or “found” pallets, make sure they are not pressure treated. You can saw off the bottom slats or just leave them as is but put them on two-by-fours to have them sit stable on the ground. In those cases, you can skip the digging step (stay tuned for that here). How many pallets you use is up to you.

  • Weed barrier cloth – use any kind that allows water to pass through it. You need that so water passes from upper levels to lower levels. Cloth width must be as wide as your pallets – so we used 4′.

  • Stapler gun and staples

  • A level

  • Zip ties (24″+)

vertical pallet garden

strawberry gardening

What You Do:

1 – Cut fabric to length. Since these pallets are not pressure treated, they will eventually rot, but they will rot first where they meet the ground. To prolong their life, wrap the bottom row completely in weed cloth. The weed cloth for the bottom row is 32″. The other levels are all 16″.

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creative gardening

2 – Staple fabric to pallet along length of pallet slat. On each end, tuck the fabric in and staple to not leave any holes where water or soil could drain out. Once you get into the rhythm, they get easier to do.

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creative gardening

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3 – Level the ground as best as you can. Lay out the pallet(s) and mark where you need holes. Dig 1′ holes. A pole digger helps.

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4 – Drop the pallets into holes and use level at top. Adjust as necessary. When you have it right, fill dirt in the holes and pack it down hard with your foot. If you are doing multiple pallets in a row, zip-tying them together once they are level provides excellent stability.

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5 – Fill all the levels with compost/potting soil and plant away! Water heavily after planting to establish.

*Tip: Because the weak point of non-pressure-treated wood will be where it meets the ground, once these are in you can (carefully) scorch the earth right at the contact point with wood. This may buy you several (or more) extra years.

This is a creative & rather genius way to garden w/ vertical pallets. It's easy to do, fun, & beautiful in your yard #DIY #Gardening #ad #ForWhatMattersMost

gardening

creative gardening

strawberry gardening

creative gardening

And then, ENJOY!

Connect with TYLENOL® and Target!:

Target Gift Card Offer
Target Facebook
Target Twitter
TYLENOL® Facebook
TYLENOL® YouTube

Now tell me – what would YOU plant in your vertical pallet garden? What projects do you tackle on the weekend?

Lastly, Happy Gardening!

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This is a creative & rather genius way to garden w/ vertical pallets. It's easy to do, fun, & beautiful in your yard #DIY #Gardening #ad #ForWhatMattersMost

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I am not a medical expert, and this post is not medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. ©Johnson & Johnson Consumer Inc. 2017. The third party trademarks used herein are trademarks of their respective owners.