10 Things to Do in the Garden in March

Our March garden maintenance and planting calendar for the region, plus where to find inspiration

march garden tomato seedlings young tomatoes

10 Things to Do in the Garden in March

1. Be on the lookout for the latest plant introductions at nurseries.

2. Plant New Zealand native flaxes. Their bold blade foliage in a rainbow of colors—from chestnut red to lime green and brilliant gold—will add drama to your garden.

3. Gather the children to prep a planting row or container and sow seeds with kid appeal: purple carrots, striped beets and pink radishes.

4. Start heirloom tomato seeds now. When baby seed leaves are followed by the first true tomato leaves, transplant seedlings into 4-inch pots until ready for the garden.

5. Plant seedlings of chives, parsley, sage and tarragon and sow seeds of chervil, cilantro and dill.

march garden chive seedlings young seedlings planting gardening

6. Pull weeds, bait for snails and slugs, and clean up debris.

7. Replace declining winter-blooming annuals with colorful coleus, cosmos, marigolds, petunias and other spring and summer bloomers.

march garden calendar when to plant marigolds

8. Remove spent winter veggies to the compost pile and spade the ground, working in new soil, organic material and slow-release vegetable fertilizer.

9. Prune frost damage from affected plants as soon as the danger of frost is past in your area of the county.

10. Pick fragrant sweet peas regularly to keep them producing flowers.

Where you may find me this month

Pest Prevention

I might be scheduling an appointment with a landscape designer and/or consulting with a master gardener regarding pest and disease problems in my garden during the Spring Home/Garden Show. Open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. from March 1st through 3rd, whatever your next house or garden project, you’ll find products and the experts to help you there. You can make an appointment with an architect, landscape designer or interior designer to go over ideas for your home. For more, go to springhomegardenshow.com.

The NAT’s “Water: A California Story” Exhibit

I’m looking forward to finding out more about our local water situation at the San Diego Natural History Museum (the NAT) exhibit Water: A California Story. The show opens March 1st and runs all month. For centuries, the seasonal waters of the San Diego River supported native Kumeyaay communities. People continued to settle near the river, and the region’s population swelled with new arrivals. Local rivers and aquifers supplied all of their water until the early 1940s. And today? In San Diego, we import 80 to 90 percent of our water from the Colorado River and northern California. An estimated 19 percent of California’s energy use relates to water collection, transportation and treatment. Sound interesting? You can get more info at sdnhm.org.


Daffodils are a great way to celebrate spring, so I want to herald the season by attending the 15th Annual Daffodil Show at the Julian Chamber of Commerce from noon to 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, March 23rd and 24th. There will be more than 1,000 blooms on display and it’s free to attend. Check out the events section at visitjulian.com.

Desert Wildflowers!

Although wildflower displays depend on rain, March is usually one of the better months to view them at Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, so I may make my way over there. I’ll look for weekly updates at abdnha.org to figure out the best week.

march garden calendar anza borrego state park wildflowers superbloom

And Orchids!

And I’m going to try to make the San Diego County Orchid Society  Spring Show held at the Scottish Rite Event Center in Mission Valley. It runs Friday through Sunday, March 22-24. For times and prices, visit sdorchids.com/ot.

What’s Inspiring Me Right Now

I’m following…

Brooke Giannetti @velvetandlinen who captures the beauty of Ojai and her fantastic garden style, and illustrates her dreamy life on her Instagram (my favorite: when the goats make an appearance) and on her blog giannettihome.com.

I’m also following landscape designer Nick McCullough on Pinterest (pinterest.com/nickgardenguy) for the very best garden inspiration the internet has to offer. 

Nick McCullough march garden inspirationVegetables Love Flowers Lisa Mason Ziegler book garden guide companion planting

I’m reading…

Vegetables Love Flowers by Lisa Mason Ziegler. (Warwick’s La Jolla)

It’s got the best tips on how flowers and plants go hand in hand. If you’re looking for more info about companion planting, you’ll find it in these pages.


Categories: Garden Guide, Garden Planner, Gardening