Finally spring has sprung and there’s a lot of work to do in the gardens. Firstly, elimination of leaves and detritus; cutting back stalks that were not done in the fall, and then, the largest job, diving perennials that need dividing. Siberian Irises is first on the list, and this a job requiring immense physical strength. If your siberian irises have developed an empty ring in the center of the cluster then they’re shouting out for division. Divide as you would a pie, in sections. This is such hard work that after you’ve completed the operation, you will, in fact deserve to eat pie, and drink wine, and have some Ibuprofin to recover from it all. (By the way, this goes for Bearded Irises, as well, although they’re not nearly as difficult to deal with as the Siberian Irises, and, ideally, these ought to be divided in August.
Lily Beetles: Ugh!
These are those glossy, bright red beetles that are set upon destroying your Asiatic lilies (and many other lilies, save Daylilies). We handpick them and crush them, but, they’re nasty little creatures, and unless you have two hours in your day to screen for these little monsters, do yourselves a favor and get Neem Oil concentrate (it MUST be fresh….Neem Oil degrades rapidly when exposed to heat) and spray your Asiatic Lilies.
More about Spring gardening chores tomorrrow…..