April Gardening Jobs
April is probably the most exciting month of the year in the gardening calendar. Things suddenly begin to look green and vibrant and the warmer days and lighter evenings can gladden the heart of every gardener. You’ll feel inspired by colour from flowers and foliage and the variety of different scents. So, it’s time to shake off the winter blues and get stuck into the shrubbery.
The days are warming up, but nights can still be cold so be aware of sharp frosts. It’s tempting to put out tender young plants, but be careful; don’t buy bedding plants until next month, unless you have a greenhouse. With the warmer weather and spring rains, now we will almost certainly see an increase the gardener’s chief foes – slugs and snails. There are several organic ways of dealing with these little pests: a jar of beer in the ground with the lip just proud of the surface will produce in the morning an amazing number of drowned snails to dispose of as you wish! Try protecting vulnerable plants with coarse grit, coffee grounds or copper tape. Environmentally-friendly products are available in garden centres. It’s best to try and use several methods, but please try to avoid toxic chemicals, which are bad for birds and other wildlife.
If you didn’t give your plants an organic feed last month, a chemical fertiliser will give them an instant boost now, just when they need it. All plants need nutrients to survive, but there’s no need to feed absolutely everything every year. Trees and shrubs, for example, will grow quite happily for years, provided the ground is prepared properly when planting. With all these, all that is necessary is to apply some fertiliser in the first two or three years after planting. After that, unless there is some obvious deficiency, they’ll cope well on their own.