April Checklist

April is the first month for serious outdoor gardening! Here’s a list of tasks to help get you off to a good start.

  • Plant spinach, peas, onions, shallots, garlic and turnips as early in the month as soil and weather conditions permit.
  • Seed bare spots in the lawn early in the month.
  • Prune ornamental grasses.
  • Prune your roses, except the climbing varieties.
  • Remove the winter mulch from roses after the middle of the month.
  • Divide summer and autumn blooming perennials.
  • Rake winter debris from your lawn before mowing.
  • Start celosia, cosmos, marigold, annual phlox and zinnia seeds indoors at mid month.
  • Repot your houseplants; begin fertilizing them.
  • Fertilise established trees and shrubs.
  • Harden-off or condition transplants prior to moving them to the garden.
  • Plant bedding plants of cabbage, broccoli and collards the third week.
  • Direct seed beets, carrots, leaf lettuce, mustard greens, bok choy and radishes around the middle of the month.
  • Plant strawberries, rhubarb, asparagus, and small fruit plants as early in the month as possible.
  • Plant gladiolus corms.
  • Plant daylilies, delphiniums, painted daisies and phlox.
  • Remove spent flowers from spring flowering bulbs.
  • Sharpen the lawn mower blade. Mow the lawn no shorter than 2 1/2 inches.
  • Sow hardy annual flowers like calendula, clarkia, larkspur and sweet pea.
  • Turn the compost pile and keep it moist.
  • Protect well-developed strawberry buds from frost injury by applying straw mulch when freezing temperatures are forecast.
  • Start aubergine, pepper and tomato seeds indoors at the middle of the month.
  • Do not fertilise newly planted trees or shrubs.
  • Have a soil sample analyzed.
  • Prune early flowering shrubs immediately after flowering and before new growth begins.
  • Have a great April!

Adapted from “Seeds of Hope… Harvest of Pride!” – Gardener’s Checklist, www.bright.net/~gardens/index.html