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April Planting

There is something quite satisfying about tidying the garden as the sun starts shining, even its just pruning, tidying or even sowing something ready for the summer months. At Hillsborough we love nothing more than promoting garden care for keen beginners and reminders for the passionate expert.

 

So, here’s our list of top gardening jobs in April.

 

Flowers Bed Heaven 

flowerbeds

• Start digging in a 5cm (minimum) layer of compost or well mature manure into your beds to prepare your soil for the growing season.

• Add a layer of mulch around your perennials, trees and shrubs before the hot weather arrives. Use organic matter such as matured manure. This will help the soil retain the moisture in the warmer summer months, but will also give your garden a neat and tidy appearance.

• Feed trees, shrubs and hedges with a balanced, slow-release fertiliser by gently teasing it into the soil surface with a gardening fork. Roses will greatly benefit from a feeding as they come into growth during spring / summer.

• Start to move evergreen shrubs and trees now, ensure the soil isn't frozen or waterlogged.

• Plant summer-flowering bulbs such as, Lilies, Gladiolus and Ranunculus into beds, borders and containers. Plant lily bulbs in pots now ready for your summer display, but using pots you can move and arrange your flowers around patios or as gap fillers in your flower beds.

• If any of your garden plants require supporting, put these in now so the plants grow up and through them. Adding supports afterwards is difficult and may damage the plant.

• Tie in climbing and rambling roses to their supports. 

• Honeysuckle and Clematis will now be putting on growth, now is a great time to tie in new stems to train the plant as it grows. 

• If you haven't done so already, cut back any dead foliage left on your perennials and ornamental grasses to allow for new growth.

• Remove any faded flowers from your winter pansies to stop them setting seed. This will encourage flushes of new flowers throughout the spring.

• Check that your container plants are not drying out - warm weather can quickly affect the moisture levels of the soil.

 

Vegetables Galore

vegetable beds

• Start digging in a 5cm (minimum) layer of compost or well mature manure into your vegetable beds to prepare your soil for the growing season. 

• Plant your sprouted potatoes outside in the ground or in potato grow bags. 

• If you’ve planted asparagus harvest the spears when they are no more than 18cm tall.

• For quick and easy pea supports push some sticks around your pea plants now, this will support these as they grow.

• Spread your carrot seedlings to give them enough to grow to a healthy size – it’s a good idea to do this in the evening when there are fewer carrot flies are around.

• Prepare vegetable seedbeds by removing any weeds and mixing in plenty of compost. Cover prepared soil with sheets of black plastic to keep it drier and warmer in preparation for planting.

• Build raised beds to take the physical bending out of growing vegetables.

 

Feeling Fruity

fruit trees

• Enrich the soil ready for planting strawberries with plenty of matured manure. Place cloches over your strawberry plants ready for earlier crops.

• Protect your fruit blossom from any late frosts by covering them with fleece on cold nights.

• Spray the emerging leaves of peach and nectarine trees to prevent peach leaf curl. Sheltering your plants from the rain will also reduce the risk of peach leaf curl.

• Place mulch around fruit trees as well as well matured manure or garden compost taking care not to mound mulch up around the trunk.

• Apply a slow-release fertiliser around the base of your raspberry canes, fruit bushes and fruit trees to encourage a good yield.

 

Green-fingered Greenhouse

greenhouses

• At the start of a new planting season we recommend giving your greenhouse a thorough clean with hot soapy water to get rid of pests and diseases and to let more light in.

• Start sowing tomato seeds indoor, ready to plant out after any risk of frost has passed. If you're struggling for growing space buy ready-grown tomato plants.

• Keep an eye on your seedlings - as soon as they have their first true leaves, prick them out into pots or modules for further growth.

• If your greenhouse is heated, plant up your summer hanging baskets with plug plants now and keep them under cover until any risk of frost has passed.

• Pinch out the tips of fuchsia shoots and sweet pea plants to encourage bushy plants this summer.

  

With these tips and hints you’ll a flourishing garden to be proud truly proud of!

 

 

 

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