April showers, May flowers!

2nd April 2024

As the saying goes… April showers, May flowers. Well in our case. For the whole of winter, it’s been raining for days and days. Let’s not shed further tears to fill those puddles! I say with confidence. Spring is on its way. With each new day the weather has started to warm. Dawn chorus has started to get louder. For me that is a sure sign spring is on its way! (Even though the skies say otherwise).

In the greenhouse the frenzy of seed sowing is in full swing. The ornamental flowers seeds that were sown in March are popping up with eagerness. Time to pot them up and free up the much-needed seed trays for the next seeds. Cosmos, Tagetes and Helicrysum get sown in seed trays. Nasturtiums and Sweetpea are getting nestled into individual 9cm pots. Next in line are the bean seeds. They get sown in deep trainers. Towards the end of the month Squash seeds will be sown. They have such a quick growth spurt. Timing is crucial. I don’t like them kept too pot bound. So, 6 weeks (or thereabouts) prior to my area’s last frost date is when I sow these seeds.

Outdoors I left a few beds unkept over the winter months. This helped create a safe hibernation area for insects like ladybirds. They are now fully awake and out and about. The clear up of the flower beds is now in full swing. First fork and tease out any perennial weed. Snip of all dead and decaying materials from around the herbaceous flower beds. Where needed I’ll refresh with fresh compost. Paths are cleared of the last leaf litter finding its way onto the compost heap. Instantly, the garden looks refreshed.

It’s time to dress the herbaceous borders with fresh peat-free compost as well as the soft fruits beds with ericaceous compost. The strawberry (pots or beds), summer and autumn fruiting raspberries, blueberry, black, red and white currants always appreciate this annual top-up. To start bridging the hunger gap, plant out new cabbage and cauliflower plants and protect the area from bird pests with wire cloches or netting. Before the April showers arrive, direct sow alternative rows of carrot and spring onion. Direct sown radishes and lettuce will land onto the dinner plate within weeks.

Oops forgot one! Back to direct sowing Parsnip seeds. Let us know what your grow plans are for this year.

Happy Gardening,


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