BestReviews is reader-supported and may earn an affiliate commission. Details
Expert Shopper Lawn & Garden

What do you need for spring gardening?

Alvina Wong/BestReviews

Which gardening tools and tasks are important for spring?

Once the weather starts to warm up, it’s finally time to start your spring planting. Similar to a house needing a thorough spring cleaning after being closed up all winter, you also need to prepare your garden. You’ll need to follow a few steps and acquire specific equipment to ensure your preparation doesn’t hit any bumps. 

Whether you’re a beginner jumping into spring gardening for the first time or a seasoned gardener needing a refresher, this guide will outline everything you need for spring garden preparation.

Shop this article: Black Duck Brand 25 Slightly Assorted Flower Seed PacketsGardeners Basics Melon Fruit Seeds 5 Variety Packs and Fiskars SoftGrip Bypass Pruner

Considerations when preparing your garden

There are a few things to consider before beginning your spring planting. You’ll need to pay attention to the amount of space you have, as well as knowing ideal planting times.

Pots vs. raised beds vs. ground

Before picking your plants, you might want to consider what type of garden you will have. For example, a pot is acceptable for spring flowers but cannot accommodate melons. 

If you have a lot of space and excellent soil, planting directly in the ground is your best choice and won’t affect what you can plant. If you have ample space but inadequate soil like sand or rock, raised garden beds will be an ideal choice. For those who have little to no space or just a patio, you’ll want to plant in pots.

What to plant in spring

Black Duck Brand 25 Slightly Assorted Flower Seed Packets

Nothing says springtime quite like flowers blooming in your garden. This collection of seed packets takes the guesswork out of which flowers to plant in spring; it contains a wide variety of flower seeds suitable for this particular season, including forget me nots, pinks, marigolds, zinnia, wildflower, poppy, snapdragon and more.

Black Duck Brand 43 Assorted Vegetable and Herb Seed Packets

This seed set contains an array of herbs and vegetables to plant in spring, including cucumbers, peas, broccoli, peppers and more. Most of these are suitable even for beginners who are just starting a vegetable garden.

Gardeners Basics Melon Fruit Seeds 5 Variety Packs

Melons are relatively low maintenance and easy to grow, tending to thrive in hot air and moist soil. This set of fruit seeds includes two watermelon varieties, cantaloupe, honeydew melon and yellow canary melon. 

Sustainable Sprout Heirloom Tomato Seeds 9 Variety Pack

Tomatoes are one of the most popular items in a home garden. They’re great for beginners, and you can expect tomatoes in only a couple of months.

Burpee Mignonette Strawberry Seeds

Strawberry seeds are best planted in late spring to avoid any frost or cold soil. They need a ton of sunlight.

Palm Beach Medicinal Herbs Red Raspberry Seeds

Pick a sunny spot to plant your raspberry seeds. They usually bloom in the summertime.

How to prepare your garden for spring

Your garden has sat empty for the winter months and needs a little care before it’s ready for planting. It doesn’t require too much time and effort, but a little work can help your garden succeed in a big way.

Tool maintenance

Another thing that needs a little care after sitting untouched the entire winter is your gardening tools. Plant sap and dirt from the previous year can hold bacteria or fungus, and you don’t want to pass that onto your new plants. Your tools are also prone to rust from water and condensation. Sharpening your tool blades is vital to staying safe during the gardening season. You want your tools to do the job they intended and not create unnecessary work by being dull. 

If you don’t have any tools, look at our list and see what equipment you need to have a successful spring gardening season.

Weed and pest management

Weeds don’t disappear during the winter, and neither do pests. If you have existing garden beds, give your plants the best chance to succeed by ensuring no weeds are present when you plant. Some pests might have also made a home in your soil, so examine it thoroughly. Roots need airflow to survive, so this also does double duty by loosening the compacted soil. 

Test your soil

Not all soil is created equally. Doing a soil and pH test is the best way to see what nutrients your soil needs. If your test uncovers that your soil has high phosphorus levels, you’ll want to get a fertilizer that doesn’t contain much phosphorus. Hydrangeas and other garden plants love acidic soil, so if your test reveals naturally alkaline soil, you might need to add aluminum sulfate.

Mulch and fertilizer

Whether you’re a beginner or have an existing garden, you’ll need new mulch and fertilizer. Fertilizer feeds your plants essential nutrients, so decide what you want to plant before deciding on fertilizer. For example, tomatoes like calcium while pansies enjoy phosphorus. Mulch is essential since it protects against weeds and controls moisture. 

Best gardening tools and equipment for springtime use

Magid Extra-Long Thornproof Pruning and Gardening Gloves

Gardening gloves are essential to prevent scrapes and blisters. These durable, full-coverage gloves can stand up to even the thorniest plants. They're comfortable and flexible too. 

Edward Tools Garden Trowel

After a long winter, dirt is often packed down and tough to dig. This sturdy carbon steel trowel with an ergonomic grip will make digging seed holes, weeding and mixing easier. 

Fiskars SoftGrip Bypass Pruner

Pruning is essential for gardening to keep your plants thriving, and shears make your job easier. These have a low friction coating to protect against rust.

Flexzilla Garden Hose

If you have gardening experience, you know a lot of your time is spent watering. This reliable, all-weather hose is available in a variety of lengths and comes with or without a nozzle kit. 

Bully Tools 16-Inch Bow Rake

This bow rake has a 58-inch long fiberglass handle to increase leverage and reduce fatigue. The steel head is ideal for preparing your garden beds.

Rubberific Rubber Mulch

Rubber mulch doesn’t suck up the moisture, which discourages weed and fungal growth. It doesn’t attract insects and is low maintenance.

Miracle-Gro Water-Soluble All-Purpose Plant Food

Plants need nutrition to thrive, and this Miracle-Gro is suitable for all flowers, fruit and vegetables. It’s easy to use — just mix and water.

Viagrow 1-Gallon Plastic Nursery Pots

Whether you have a small patio space or want to start your seeds indoors, this 10-pack of plastic nursery pots is essential. One gallon is an ideal size for fruit seeds, vegetable seeds and a variety of flowers.

The Planket Frost Protection Plant Cover

Nights can still produce frost in early spring. This frost protection cover will keep your new plants from getting too cold and dying.

Smart Pot Big Bag Fabric Raised Bed

While you can build your own garden bed, these fabric beds are easy to set up and tear down. They’re a great choice if you don’t have a lot of garden space.

Scotts Weed Barrier Fabric

Landscape fabric is one of the easiest ways to control weeds. Make sure all weeds and old vegetation are removed before rolling your fabric out.

Fiskars Power Lever Hedge Shears

Larger trees and shrubs will need to be trimmed periodically. The patented self-sharpening design keeps the blades at their best. 

Worth checking out

Prices listed reflect time and date of publication and are subject to change.

Check out our Daily Deals for the best products at the best prices and sign up here to receive the BestReviews weekly newsletter full of shopping inspo and sales.

Share this post: