April showers bring May flowers is a very apt proverb for the month of April. The sap begins to run in plants and the scent of many fragrant flowers are one of the most potent signs that winter is finally over and the garden has woken up. This is an important month for the vegetable garden and also a time not to be fooled by mild days as night frost can undo all the earlier seed sowing unless plants are protected.
The important tasks for the month are as follows:
Lawn care is of paramount importance this month. After the first few cuttings apply a fertilizer, weedkiller and mosskiller. application to get that lush green expanse of grass over the summer months. Suitable products include Westland Lawn, Feed Weed & Mosskiller and Evergreen complete 4 in 1. Apply using a spreader.
Sow new lawns. Repair bald patches and damaged edges.
Sow outdoors a wide selection of vegetable seeds e.g. carrots, parsnips, cabbages, salad onions, spinach, herbs, beetroot, peas, broad beans, etc.
Cabbage plants raised indoors can planted out once hardened off.
Put brassica collars around all cabbages to deter cabbage root fly and erect low screens around carrots to keep carrot fly at bay.
Earth up early sown potatoes every time new growth reaches 10-15cm above ground.
Weed seedlings appear rapidly this month. Remove them before they flower and set further seeds.
Feed shrubs and roses with one of the well balanced fertilizers such as Miracle-Gro Rose & Shrub Food.
All evergreens can be pruned over the summer months beginning in April.
Note: This is the time of year when the garden centres are fully stocked with a fresh crop of colourful perennial and shrubs.