Hello, is it safe to begin garden cleanup? I don’t want to disturb any bees or pollinators. Thanks.
Howard County Maryland
There is such a diversity of beneficial insects and pollinators that there is no one time that they will all have emerged. For gardening purposes, as soon as new plant growth begins to emerge, it is easiest to do clean-up. This is mainly to either remove old growth before it impedes the new growth and for easier accessibility without damaging tender growth in tight quarters. You can keep the debris and lay them in an obscure part of the garden (if it would be an eyesore left where it is) for later-emerging insects to stay sheltered.
You can certainly do clean-up in stages if you don't want to remove growth on still-dormant plants, since some sprout earlier than others.