April is a kind month, its warmth encouraging shoots and seedlings to burst into new growth at last. There are daffodils and the first tulips to enjoy, as well as spring perennials and the glory of spring blossom. So here are this month’s jobs so you can get yourself outside and enjoy it all!
- Restock ponds with summer beauties such as water lilies and irises, planting into aquatic compost in porous baskets with a covering of gravel to hold everything in place.
- Start mowing the lawn at least once a fortnight now that the grass is growing more quickly, keeping the mower blade at a medium height for now.
- Prune evergreens now that the harshest cold is over, including winter-flowering heathers, lavender, rosemary and sage to keep them producing plenty of new flowering wood.
- Deadhead faded daffodils leaving the stem to die down and feed the bulb through summer. A boosting feed with a capful of liquid seaweed added to the watering can gives them a pick-me-up too.
- Sow annual climbers such as morning glory, Cobaea scandens (cup and saucer vine) and Spanish flag for a mass of brilliantly colourful flowers all summer.
- Start sowing courgettes about 2cm deep into 9cm pots, keeping them warm until seed leaves appear. They tend to germinate quite quickly; pot on as soon as the roots fill the container.
- Transplant tomato seedlings as they grow bigger; they should be well rooted in their pots by now and ready to go into the greenhouse. Plant into large pots or grow bags, or into the greenhouse border soil.
- Plant second early and maincrop potatoes burying them about 15cm deep and 60cm apart. As shoots emerge, pull earth up around them to encourage more tubers and a bumper harvest.