What to do in the garden during April

What to do in the garden during April

Spring is officially here, and there's plenty to be doing in the garden this month, from removing the old leaves of Hellebores to building raised beds for vegetables, and what better time to do this than over the extended Easter bank holiday?

1)  Prune early flowering shrubs such as Forsythia after flowering is over.

2)  Check that all the old leaves have been removed from flowering Hellebores.

3)  Divide primroses that are in good-sized clumps after they have finished flowering.

4)  Mow the lawn at frequent intervals as the grass begins to grow strongly. Apply a spring fertilizer dressing as the weather warms up.

5)  Ventilate greenhouses and cold frames as the days get warmer.

6)  If you are buying Growbags or bags of compost, check that they have this year’s date; out of date bags are renowned for providing poor results.

7)  Cut off dead hydrangea flowers down to the top 2 strongest growth buds.

8)  Apply weed and moss killer to established lawns.

9)  Complete the final pruning trim of roses, add fertilizer and a mulch to the base.

10)  Rake lawns to level worm casts, twigs and old grass before the first mowing.

11)  Make an early start looking out for dandelions, bindweed, etc., and dig them out. Check over the lawn for established perennial weeds before the grass hides them.

12)  Towards the end of the month, collect woody twigs to support perennials before they get too long and straggly.

13)  Trim lavenders and Santolinas to shape but do not cut back into the older wood.

14)  Propagate perennials such as Rudbeckias, Michaelmas daisies and Heleniums by division, save the younger, more active areas of the clump and throw away the old bits.

15)  Check stakes and ties of trees planted in the last two years. Stakes should still be sound, and the tree ties not strangling the tree. Ease the tie if necessary.

16)  Continue to dead-head spent daffodils and other winter flowering plants.

17)  Plant new raspberry canes in a weed-free area; it will be some years before lifting them.

18)  Build raised beds for easier vegetable production throughout the year.

19)  Lavateras need to be cut back hard to ensure a good flower display later in the season.

20)  Apply grass seed to areas of the lawn that appear rather thin; cover the seed with fleece for a few days to prevent the birds from stealing the seed.

Posted 1st Apr 10:35am