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Springtime means bulbs, buds and blooms

Moving spring-blooming bulbs, using coffee grounds in the garden, and planting dahlias are some of the gardening tips for this month.

If you want to move some spring-blooming bulbs to another spot, or thin thick clumps of daffodils, wait until the foliage has turned yellow later in summer, then carefully dig them up and let them dry in a shady spot for a few days. Store the bulbs in a cool, dry place for the summer until it's time to plant them in fall.

Coffee grounds contain some major nutrients (nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium) as well as some micronutrients, so put them to work in your garden. Allow them to dry and then spread them around the base of plants. Lettuce, especially, seems to benefit, and the grounds may benefit acid-loving plants since the grounds are slightly acidic. Coffee grounds also will deter slugs. Slit coffee filters and place them around the base of hosta stems if slugs are a problem.

Patience is the key to setting out many tender transplants, whether flowers or warm-season vegetables such as tomatoes and peppers. Otherwise, have some frost protection ready! Keep some of the inexpensive frost protection cloth, as available online and at many garden stores, handy. Even if frost isn't a problem, warm season crops including squash and corn wont grow well in cool temperatures and soils. If tomato plant leaves turn purplish, that's a sign temperatures are too cool and they aren't absorbing the needed phosphorus.

Vines such as clematis will grow through trees and shrubs if you give them the support they need to get started. Surround the lower portion of a tree with a cylinder of fencing to give the vine something to cling to until it reaches the branches. Or attach some twine to a lower branch and anchor it in the ground with a U-shaped stake.

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