CoastLine: Spring Planting During Coronavirus Restrictions

Apr 22, 2020

April 22nd marks the 50th year the world celebrates Earth Day.  This Friday, April 24th is National Arbor Day.  As people self-isolate, vehicle traffic has lessened, parks have quieter days, and some environmental essayists suggest the Earth is breathing a sigh of relief.  

The BBC reports a pride of lions has taken to napping on a road in a South African National Park, a herd of Kashmiri goats runs around a Welsh town eating hedges and snacking on greens in residential window boxes.   In California’s Yosemite Park, Reuters reports that bears and coyotes now walk in areas usually populated by people.  The rats in New Orleans are almost certainly wondering, says The New York Times, where the usual French Quarter crowds — and their trash — have gone.

In New Hanover County, officials tell us the gardens at the Arboretum are flourishing – perhaps enjoying the break from all that foot traffic. 

And while people are mandated to generally stay home and self-isolate, landscaping and spring planting continues. 

On this edition of CoastLine, we find out how to undertake spring gardening safely – given the Covid-19 restrictions.  We also learn which varieties are best-suited for planting right now.  And we find out how to better care for our existing trees, shrubs, and flowering plants.   And for those ready to tackle growing their own produce, we get some guidance – and find out why a large backyard or even garden space is not necessary. 


Lloyd Singleton, Director, North Carolina Cooperative Extension New Hanover County Center at the Arboretum

Tom Ericson, Co-owner, The Transplanted Garden, South 16th Street, Wilmington

New Hanover County Soil and Water Conservation District rain barrel information: