With longer days and warmer weather on the horizon, many of us are starting to think about our spring garden and yard projects. It’s no coincidence that April is also national Dig Safe Month – a timely reminder to always Call or Click Before you Dig, no matter the size of the project you’re tackling. Some utilities may be located just centimeters below the surface, so whether you’re installing a fence, planting a vegetable garden, or planting a line of cedar hedging, placing a locate request to identify any underground infrastructure should always be your first step.

Not everyone has a green thumb, so we asked a few of our gardening enthusiast friends here at Trans Mountain to share some easy ways to get started and to create the perfect garden for you!

  • Place a locate request using Click Before You Dig – It’s an easy resource that will connect you to your local One Call Centre, no matter what province or state you’re in. A locate request should be place a minimum of three days in advance of starting any project.
  • Those three days are a perfect opportunity for you to plan out your project and think about your options:
    • There are many things to consider, including the type of garden you want to grow, how much space sunlight you have, what enhancements you want your garden to have, and how much time you want or need to invest in planting and maintenance.
    • Herbs are an easy plant to start with. They need minimal space and can grow in an outdoor planter, a window planter or on a windowsill. Harvest your bounty throughout the summer by using scissors to gently trim your herbs and enjoy the fresh flavours in your cooking!
    • Flowers are also a great option. There are two main types: annuals (a quick and often inexpensive way to add colour but need to be replanted each year), or perennials (come back year after year). Spring is the perfect time to plant gladiolus bulbs. They will bloom in the summer and add a vertical “pop” of colour to your garden!
    • A new garden might even call for a new fence or hedge – whether it’s to provide a little shade for your plants or a safe place for your pets to play. Just remember to help your dog “Click or Call Before they Dig” up your freshly planted garden!
  • Sunlight is the key to (most) plants hearts:
    • Picking the right spot in your backyard, your deck or garden is important. Tomatoes will not grow in the shade, but there are lots of plants such as ferns or hostas that prefer a little more shade. By scoping out the sunlight in your space, you will ensure your plants thrive. Most seeds and plants will include information about how much sun and space a plant requires.
  • Water is a plants best friend:
    • However, there is a thing as too much or too little. Always be sure to check your plant tag to look at frequency and amount of watering you’ll need to do at the beginning and once established. There are lots of choices for plants that are drought tolerant if you want to conserve water or live in a drier climate.
  • Enjoy the bounty!
    • Whether you planted herbs and vegetables to eat with your family, or flowers to longingly look at. Enjoy your hard work and know that you did it safely!

Placing a One Call is all about keeping our families, neighbours, and communities safe. So, the next time you’re starting a project, remember to Click or Call Before You Dig!

And, the next time you share some photos of your garden on social media, think about spreading the word about safe digging by using the hashtags #DigSafe or #DigSafeMonth, or just adding a friendly reminder for your friends and family!