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What To Do In The Garden In April

What To Do In The Garden In April

If March is the transitional month between winter and spring, then April is the gateway to most of our spring gardening. Yes, you may be in an area that can still see late season freezes and even some snow, but for the most part…it’s SPRING! And you know what that means, don’t you? Your shovels, trowels, and compost piles better be ready because they’re about to get a pretty big workout.

Follow our tips to stay on top of your April garden, and always remember to defer to your local experts on the best times to plant in your area.

April Garden Chores & Activities

  1. Clean up the garden. For Pete’s sake, you haven’t done that yet? It’s okay, we’re gonna give you a pass as long as you get out to that garden immediately and complete that chore. It’s difficult to actively garden when the garden is a mess!
  2. Plant tender bulbs. Tend to this one now and you’ll be a happy camper in the summer. If you’re frost-free, go ahead and plant caladiums, cannas, and tuberous begonias (rounded side down, please).
  3. Prune spring-flowering bulbs. As your tulips, hyacinths, and daffodils complete their blooming, snip off the flower stalks to encourage the plants to store energy in the bulbs for next year’s bloom. Leave the foliage alone until it turns brown and fades — we love planting annuals around them so the new flowers camouflage the fading bulb foliage.
  4. Plant annuals. Pansies, violas, alyssum, snapdragons can be planted in cooler climates while those warmer southern zones are ready for petunias, salvia, vinca, verbena, and sunflowers.
  5. Move houseplants outside. If you overwintered some houseplants indoors, start slowly moving them outside if you want a little extra greenery on your patio or deck. The key is to do it slowly so they acclimate to sunnier and warmer conditions easily.
  6. Plant veggies and herbs. Get those salad crops (lettuce, arugula, Swiss chard, beets, carrots, radishes) and herbs (mint, chives, oregano, sage) in the ground.
  7. Plant roses. Both container and bare root roses can be planted this month. Nestle them in and among your other flowering perennials and ornamental grasses for a colorful and textural look.
  8. Tend to your compost pile. Turn it, add more kitchen scraps/grass cuttings (if you have them), and water it down a bit.
  9. Plan your container garden. Try your hand at combining annuals, flowering perennials, evergreens, and ornamental grasses in your container plantings this year. Or opt for the “one plant/one pot) strategy for big impact.
  10. Stay on top of spring weeds. Now’s the time to make sure your garden is neat and tidy. Keep those weeds out before they have a chance to take over your garden, because if you leave this task untended too long, your summer garden will suffer.
  11. Fill up bird feeders and waterers. The birds have had a long winter, too! Make sure they get their fill so they continue to visit your garden.
  12. Keep your garden supplies handy. Bags of mulch, fertilizers, and any pest controls you typically use should be shored up now so you don’t run out during the busy garden season.

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  • Jenny Peterson