Gardeners beware. I know we have had some beautiful weather recently. Trees, shrubs and bulbs are in bud and bloom. The green thumb brigade is getting itchy to dig in the dirt and plant spring flower and vegetable gardens. That's a wonderful thing, but I caution you to slow down and have some patience.
It has been an extremely warm winter and there probably won't be a late freeze, but I would hate for people to buy all those plants and have Mother Nature surprise Louisiana with a temperatures cold enough to damage or kill tender young foliage. That would mean a waste of time and money that few can afford in these economic times.
You might argue that everything is bursting forth with exuberance and you don't want to get left behind the vegetation curve. Fair enough. Get out there and take advantage of the good weather. Right now, you can prepare your flower beds by getting rid of winter weeds, turning the soil, adding soil if needed and buying mulch and fertilized in preparation of the big day. But to be safe, wait until after Easter to plant in the ground.
If you just can't wait to get your hands on some of those gorgeous blooms hitting stores right now, plant in pots. It's the perfect way to segue from winter to spring and still enjoy the color and charm flowers provide. Just plant a few petunias in decorative pots and then you can bring them inside and protect them if there is an unexpected cold snap.
After Easter, take your potted plants and put them in the ground for a more established look immediately or keep you pots and buy additional plants for your flower and vegetable gardens.
Whatever you do, have fun.