Friday, April 1, 2011

April Calendar

At the beginning of each month during the growing season we will provide a calendar with a week by week timetable with a guide to the best time to approach garden tasks.

Begin to remove winter coverings.  Clear mulch carefully to avoid injuring new growth.  
Make sure soil is not too wet before turning over.
Unwrap roses, prune deadwood, remove mulch from crowns.
Start weeding onion grass and chickweed.
Pansies set out in a street-side
apartment house planter

You can plant pansies now.
It’s not too late to sow sweet peas outdoors. Saint Patrick’s Day
and Good Friday are the traditional days for this.  
Start weeding onion grass and chickweed.
Train vines to their supports, tying up branches dislodged by  winter winds. Cut off bruised and broken ends.
Check shrubs for suckers and prune.  
Paint railings and steps.
Scrub terraces and balconies.
Visit local nurseries to select trees and shrubs.

Narrow twig containers are the perfect
size for growing herbs on windowsills

Buy new containers and tubs.  Fill            with soil in anticipation of planting.
Soak and plant second round of sweet peas.
Plant cool weather vegetables : lettuces, herbs, beets cabbages, onions and leeks.
Rake the last of the dead leaves from lawns and beds.
Hose down house siding.
Cultivate and rake perennial borders.  Feed with commercial fertilizer.
Seed the lawn.
Fertilize lawns, shrubs and roses.

Find a place outdoors for your gift
plants and re-pot them

Consider the gift plants.  Prepare to deal with your Easter gifts by locating a place either outdoors in the soil, or outdoors in a larger pot.
Beware of cut-rate plants.  There are no bargains in this world.
Watch out for rabbits, chipmunks, and voles.  Look for tell-tale holes.  If you have any success in keeping them at bay, please let us know.
Track down the little bulbs-- crocus, scilla and their kin -- and take notes for your fall orders.
Finish dividing perennials that performed poorly last year.  
Last call to move large trees and shrubs.

Keep your gift plants indoors until the nights are consistently warm.
Prune forsythia and other spring flowering shrubs whenever the blooms are finished.
If the soil is not sticky, sow seeds of hardy vegetables and flowers. Make sure night temperatures are steady at or above 55F.
You might be able to keep pansies blooming through early July by picking off the dead blossoms so that seeds will not form.  If they are planted in a shady spot for part of the day, they will bloom even longer..  
If you are growing lavender, prune it back hard to encourage new growth.
Cut back Russian sage, leaving just six to twelve inches of woody growth.  Pinch out the tips of new growth to encourage a bushier form.
If you see ants on peony buds, leave them in peace; they are harmless.

1 comment:

  1. I love this calendar. You might actually inspire this urban black thumb into a trying her hand at a few containers indoors.