May Gardening Checklist


May Gardening Checklist





  • May is the time to select your flowering perennials to have a progression of bloom from spring to fall.
  • Transplant ground-covers including English Ivy, Myrtle, Lily of the Valley, Pachysandra & Ajuga. 
  • Stake elongating stalks of Peonies in early May to prevent “flopping” – use special peony rings. Leave in place until the stalks are cut to the ground in late September.
  • Remove spent blossoms from tulips, daffodils & other bulbs, but let foliage wither & turn yellow before you remove it to replenish the bulb’s food supply for next year.
  • Apply Rose fertilizer (Rosetone) now – rich in organics, to promote vigorous growth & beautiful blooms.


  • Make successive plantings of carrots, beets, radishes, chard & leaf lettuce.
  • Since phosphorous moves very slowly in the soil, fertilizers with this nutrient are best scratched into the root zone.
  • Wash insect-infested herb plants with a mild soap solution, then rinse with clear water.
  • Select early, mid-season & late cultivars of Blueberries for a long picking season.
  • May is for Mother’s Day! Remember Mom with a flowering plant OR LEAVE HER ALONE ALL DAY SO SHE CAN GARDEN!
  • Make first planting of sweet corn & green beans.
  • Plant Dahlias in sunny, well-drained, fertile soil after the ground is warm.
  • Set aside a small plot near the back door as a “snack” garden. Enjoy herbs, berries & veggies.



  • Hedges of boxwood, privet, barberry & yew can be sheared or trimmed as often as needed through the summer to keep their shape. Keep the base wider than the top.
  • Finger-prune the “candles” of mugho pine, pinching them back most of the way to force internal growth rather than leggy growth beyond the plant’s present height & width.
  • Tent caterpillars have exited their egg clusters & constructed silken tents in the crotches of trees. They won’t venture far beyond the tent for the next few weeks, but by late May they will start devouring foliage day & night.
  • If possible, poke a hole in the tent & direct a stream of water into the tent to break it apart & knock it to the ground.
  • Then sprinkle limestone over the wiggling caterpillars to immobilize them, causing them to die in a matter of hours.
  • Protect honeybees! Never apply insecticides to fruit trees in bloom.
  • Want privacy? Plant a hedge of Arborvitae, Hemlock, White Pine, upright Junipers.



  • Grubs have entered a month-long resting phase after which the emerge as flying Japanese beetles. If you choose to treat for these May is the time!
  • Spot treat broad-leaf weeds with an appropriate herbicide if weeds are not widespread throughout your lawn.


If you missed Aprils Gardening tips and tricks you can read them here:  What you need to do in Late April to care for your Trees, Shrubs, Lawn & Gardens.      I

If you are feeling ambitious and want to add some hardscape to your property here is an easy weekend project: How  to build a stone wall from start to finish with no steps skipped! See the beautiful shade garden you can add to the stone wall!

Looking for some gardening ideas? Check out the garden tour photos from last year!

Additional information:

Tips for improving curb appeal via Kyle Hiscock

Landscaping Tips to Improve Home Security via Xavier De Buck

How Your Backyard Can Increase The Value of  Your Home via Anita Clark

Home Staging and Home Sale Preparation   via Bill Gassett

Alternatives to Open Door Flip My House via John Cunningham

Yard Maintenance Tips for Top Selling Price via Wendy Weir


Real Estate information was provided by Eileen Anderson, recognized leader in her field. If you are looking to hire a top realtor Eileen can be reached via email at or by phone at 860-966-2112.

Thinking of selling your home? Don’t make these common mistakes when selling your home! 

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