April Garden To-Do List
Here is the Great Big Greenhouse comprehensive garden task list for gardens in the greater Richmond metro region for April. Your additions to this list are most welcome:
If you started seeds last month, thin them and start the hardening off process.
• Start some more seeds — especially try flowering annuals like impatiens, marigolds, nasturtium, and petunias.
•Do not set out seedlings or tender annuals until after Mother’s Day (traditional last frost-free date for our entire area).
• Water shrubs and trees deeply during any dry spells.
• Prune winter damage on evergreens.
• Make compost tea and use on seedlings.
• Turn your compost pile
• Sharpen tools.
• Prune flowering shrubs, such as forsythia, lilacs, and azaleas, when they finish blooming.
• Repot and fertilize houseplants.
• Set aside a few hours each weekend for attending garden shows and tours.
• Weed by hand to avoid disturbing newly forming roots.
• Soil preparation — add lime, compost, etc. as needed.
• Walk your garden — look for early signs of fungal disease.
• Divide perennials and herbs. Pot up extras to give away at plant swaps.
• Fertilize new growth.
• Plant and prune roses.
• Transplants small trees and shrubs.
• Buy or check on your stored summer bulbs (such as dahlias and caladiums). Pot them and start to water, if you want to give them an early start on the season.
• Build a raised bed for vegetables. Add lots of manure and compost.
• Buy an indoor plant to liven up your office space. Try an orchid or African violet.
• Start/keep fertilizing your indoor plants.
• Cut back and clear out the last of your perennial beds and ornamental grasses.
• Mulch beds with a light hand.
• Feed birds and provide nesting materials (try dryer lint) as well as houses for the start of their family season.
• Sow beans and corn directly outdoors.
• Start carrots, turnips, and parsnips in well-draining beds or in deep containers.
• Keep cutworms off newly planted edible seedlings by surrounding them with a collar cut from a plastic bottle or cardboard tube.
• Pick peas often to encourage the plants to produce more.
• Ensure new seedlings do not dry out by installing a drip-irrigation system.
• Start herbs from seed or cuttings.
• Edge garden beds.
• Remove Ivy, Pachysandra, and other vine-like groundcover from under shrubs.
• Work in dry, not wet soil to avoid compacting the earth.
• Hand pick cabbage worms from broccoli and other cabbage family plants.
• Put row covers over vulnerable crops — remove cover to allow for pollinating once they set flowers.
• Thin lettuce seedlings and plant more seeds in new rows.
Additions to the list?!?!?! Eeek!
I have work to do.
Lots of it.