A guide to tasks to do in your garden this month.
Spring is here! From daffodils and primroses to the cheery sound of birdsong and trees covered in blossom, shows of it are all around. As usual, there will be the odd April shower and dip in temperature this month. Warm, sunny days will give you the time to tend to your lawn, sow seeds and begin planning your summer garden – just be mindful that the weather is changeable this month, so keep an eye on forecasts and watch out for April frosts.
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Below I have listed a number of things to take care of this month in your garden:
Repot container shrubs –
Pot on shrubs that have outgrown their containers, into larger pots.
Deadhead spring bulbs -
Keep on top of deadheading bulbs to prevent them from setting seed. This puts their energy back into the bulbs for a good display next year.
Plant out autumn-sown sweet peas –
Transplant them outdoors at the base of supports they are to grow up.
Begin sowing seeds in situ, outdoors –
Start sowing hardy annuals (e.g. pot marigolds) and wildflower seeds outside, where they are to grow. Avoid sowing seeds on frozen ground.
Add shading to greenhouses and vent –
As temperatures warm up and days are longer, add sufficient shading to prevent leaf burn. Open vents/windows/doors to allow good air circulation on sunny, warmer days.
Keep weeding –
Hoe annual weeds regularly. Dig ups perennials weeds that are starting to grow before they take hold!
Water and feed pots and houseplants –
Increase watering as plants start actively growing more. Succulents such as Aeonium species are no longer in dormancy so will require more water. Do not allow pots outside to dry out in very dry spells. Feed from now until autumn.
Protect fruit trees –
Fruit trees can be susceptible to frost damage when they are in bud, which can lead to damaging both the blossom coming into bloom and the future fruits. Protect with fleece to prevent this.
Prune Hydrangeas –
When frosts have passed, cut back old steams and last year’s blooms to a pair of healthy, new years lower down.
Prick out seedlings –
Prick out and pot-on seedlings grown in the greenhouse, once they grow their first pair of “true leaves”.
Rose care –
Tie in climbing and rambling roses. Choose strong shoots and tie horizontally to a structure or wall to encourage lots of side shoots which will grow upwards from the horizontal (with lots of flowers!). Inspect for pests and diseases, regularly. Treat as you find them – squish aphids before there is an infestation.
Shrub care –
Feed hungry shrubs and roses with a general feed, or feed with food specific for roses.
Lift and divide perennials –
Divide clumps of perennials such as Asters, Hostas, grasses and Daylilies to reinvigorate them (and make free plants!)
Continue mowing the lawn –
Never cut the grass on very wet or frosty days.
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