Preparing for spring in the garden
It’s time for spring cleaning. The garden must recover from the rigours of winter. Between the cold and the frost, the garden has suffered. As soon as the frosts end, it is necessary to act without delay and to put things in order. However, it is important to adopt the right reflexes. Outdoor maintenance is not always easy for an amateur gardener. Using the services of a professional is a sensible choice for reinvesting your green space in the summer.
In Wallonia and Flanders and in Brussels, SA Christian Devallée—landscape architects at the service of the most beautiful made-to-measure gardens in Belgium—works on the maintenance and development of the most beautiful green spaces. Founded by Christian Devallée in 1969 and managed since the end of the 2000s by landscape architect Régis Devallée, this two-generation family business offers customised formulas to meet specific needs, particularly in view of spring.
At this time of year, maintenance work is very important. The gardener’s first task is to remove all winter protection. It is necessary to remove them at the right time, neither too early, as the plants could freeze, nor too late, as they could suffer from the rising heat. Then it’s time for the aptly named spring cleaning: removal of dead leaves and debris, cleaning of the living areas as well as the water basin and pool. This is an important first step in getting the garden back into shape.
Trimming trees and refreshing borders to structure the green space
During the winter, heavy snow may have weakened or even broken the branches of the trees. From the end of February/beginning of March, these should be cut back before the buds appear. Pruning helps to discipline the tree and to stimulate the growth of new branches. Dry or damaged stems in the beds are also removed. The month of pruning differs according to the variety. The help of an expert is therefore invaluable.
The contours of beds, flowerbeds and borders should then be redesigned and refreshed by weeding. It is possible at this point to apply additional mulch at the foot of the plants to nourish and protect the soil.
Finally, the first mowing is essential to ensure that the lawn starts up again with more vigour. The cut should not be too short. To enjoy a beautiful lawn, the landscaper can carry out a scarification to eliminate moss and add fertilizer to give it density.
Supplementing the perennial beds
Once the ground is clean, the garden is ready for the long-awaited new planting. But first, it is best to loosen the soil. The hard winter conditions have made the soil less flexible. This action makes the soil easier to work and more aerated. Natural fertilisation (compost, draining amendment) is also essential to “bring life” into the soil.
After these steps comes the planting process. Many precautions must be taken to avoid weakening the perennials: soak the pot to moisten it, carefully remove the plant from its pot without destroying the root ball, cut the long roots, do not plant it too deep, pack the soil firmly and water abundantly with the neck of the watering can. There should also be some distance between the flowers so that they can breathe.
When it comes to planting varieties, the choice remains vast. You can choose anemones, irises, echinaceas, delphiniums or lavender. In order to create a sumptuous floral masterpiece, you need to know how to combine and compose the varieties. The landscape architects of SA Christian Devallée have mastered the art of floral harmony. They can easily unite the plants and create a delicate continuity in the landscape.
Finally, the automatic watering system should be turned on again in the spring. At this time of year, it is best to water the garden in the morning.
Designing garden spaces in spring
The last and most pleasant step is the aesthetic arrangement of the garden, or rather the rearrangement. It’s time to bring out your stored furniture as well as your latest acquisitions in terms of accessories, decoration and outdoor furniture: pergolas, lanterns, tables, armchairs designed for the outdoors or even deckchairs. It’s all about dressing up for the summer season. For any high-end and complete renovation project, it is always time to think about your garden with the landscape architects. The design of the garden will be decided according to the season and the programme to be carried out there.
To achieve this final touch, outdoor design elements should be chosen sparingly. An outdoor living space needs to be harmonious in order to provide an atmosphere that is not only authentic but also pleasant. Unlike indoors where mixing styles can sometimes work, it is essential to stick to a garden style with a defined theme: classic, contemporary, exotic… Once again, professional landscapers will be there to guide you in your choice and ensure you have a pleasant green space for the whole summer period.