Gardening In April

Spring should now be in evidence, with daffodils in flower and blossom adorning trees. Expect the inevitable ‘April showers’ but the frequent sunny days and rising temperatures too make it perfect gardening weather. April is an exciting month, with indoor-sown seeds well into growth, and it’s also time to start sowing outdoors.

With the warmer sunny days – gardeners are out in force everywhere – April is the month we wait for all year. We get to enjoy all of the fruits (flowers) of our labor and planning. April is the most beautiful month of the year. The birds are chirping, and the garden is coming to life… Here you can read about top things to do in April:

Where it’s Spring

– Keep ahead of the weeds.
– Turn the compost.
– Sharpen tools
– Test and amend your soil
– Prune flowering shrubs when they finish blooming
– Plant and divide perennials

Where it’s Fall

– Think about mulching and protecting tender plants for winter
– Keep watering trees and shrubs until dormant
– Now’s a good time to work on the lawn



– Direct sow and transplant hardy annuals toward the end of the month, when night temperatures stay above 55 degrees F.
– Plant fruit trees and shrubs and perennial vegetables
– Transplant and seed vegetables after danger of frost (late April / early May)
– Try to prune roses before bud break. If you’re running late, do them ASAP.

Mid-West & Northeast

– Start seeds of warm-season vegetables and flowers.
– Direct seed cool season vegetables and flowers when the ground is able to be worked.
– Begin hardening off cool season seedlings, to transplant at the end of the month.
– Begin dividing perennials.

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– Start seeds of cool season vegetables and slow growing warm season crops, including herbs, during first half of April.
– Start seeds for warm season flowers in the second half of the month,
– Hang in there. Next month will be better.


– Get whatever you can transplanted now, before the weather turns hot and the mosquitoes take over.
– Mulch around trees and shrubs.
– Make sure you water, if rain is not regular.
– Replace cool season flowers and crops as they begin to fade, with warm season plants.
– Keep and eye out for grasshopper infestations.
– Start seeds of warm season plants.
– Keep feeding flowering annuals.
– Plant container grown fruit and nut trees.
– Check citrus trees for pests like citrus leaf miner (contorted or misshapen leaves), aphids, scab, scale, whitefly and mites
– Enjoy the warm days of spring and the flowering trees.


– Direct sow warm season crops
– Spray for citrus scale with insecticidal soap or neem.

Pacific NW – Temperate

– Work on your soil. Add amendments if needed and plow under any cover crops planted last season, before they go to seed.
– Begin planting out transplants, if the ground is not too soaked.
– Get greens started by direct seeding outdoors. Plant a little each month, for succession harvests.
– Divide perennials during cool, rainy season.
– Keep row covers handy for cold snaps.

Pacific Coast

– Plant warm weather lovers.
– Plant and feed perennials
– Thin fruit on trees to about 4-5″ apart, to encourage the remaining fruit to mature to full size.
– Shop for azaleas, clematis and other flowers in bloom in garden centers.
– Hotter regions can begin planting tropicals outdoors.
– Add mulch where needed, especially around tree and shrub roots.

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– Plant warm weather lovers
– Feed perennials
– Thin fruit on trees to about 4-5″ apart, to encourage the remaining fruit to mature to full size.
– Fertilize Wisely. I mix two tablespoons of liquid fish fertilizer with 1 tablespoon of seaweed,
– Add mulch where needed, especially around tree and shrub roots.
– Enjoy the wild flowers in bloom


– Be prepared for cold snaps at night. Use row covers newspapers or sheets to protect seedlings.
– Start seeds indoor of warm season vegetables and flowers if you haven’t yet.
– Stake perennials before they get too tall.
– Finish pruning roses. Remove dead and diseased wood first. Hybrid teas can be cut back hard, to a new shoot.
– Check on cool season crops for harvesting.
– Direct seed in the vegetable garden toward the end of the month.
– Begin transplanting warm season seedlings outdoors, at the end of April when the soil has warmed and night temperatures stay above 50 degrees F.
– Give your bulbs some food once they finish blooming and allow the foliage to remain until it begins to turn yellow.
– Feed fruit and nut trees and bushes.
– Enjoy the flowering shrubs in bloom and keep an eye out for Trillium.

Southern Hemisphere

– Continue transplanting and dividing perennials.
– Plant cool season flowers and spring blooming bulbs.
– Stop feeding roses to discourage new growth that could be injured by cold weather.
– Finish planting trees and shrubs by mid-May, to allow them to establish roots before winter.
– Water winter and spring-flowering shrubs as needed.
– Sow and continue watering cool season lawns.

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