Published on April 1st 2021
A close up of a pink flower on a plant
April is a busy and beautiful month in the garden. The garden abounds in colour produced by the changing foliage of deciduous trees, berry-bearing bushes and flowering flushes of indigenous shrubs. Now is the time to sow, plant, feed and prepare your garden for winter and spring!
Here are a few tasks to take care of this month:

Plant your winter and spring garden NOW!

  • For a mass of spring colour, sow these annuals into well-prepared garden beds, after the first rains:
  • If you haven't already, sow your sweet peas! Check out our sweet pea series for all you need to know about growing one of spring's greatest pleasures.
A close up of a hand
  • Have you purchased spring-flowering bulbs yet? Store them in a cool dry place and only plant when temperatures drop significantly.
  • Prepare beds for planting winter and spring flowering bulbs - work in loads of compost to aid drainage, scatter a handful of organic general-purpose fertiliser per square metre, and add a generous dressing of bone meal.
Tip: Include indigenous bulbs like Babiana, Freesias, Gladioli, Ixias, Lachenalias, Ornithogalum, Tritonias and Sparaxis.
Try this! - Plant bulbs in containers for a beautiful winter and spring display:

General tasks

  • Re-use those autumn leaves by either adding them to your compost heap or using them as mulch in your beds. Additional mulching will also help to keep the warm temperature of the soil.
  • Remove summer-flowering annuals that are past their best and add them to the compost heap.
  • Plant out seedlings of winter- and spring flowering bedding plants, like stocks and calendulas in full sun, and cinerarias and primulas in semi-shade.
  • Plant up smaller beds, containers and hanging baskets with petunias, poppies, pansies, alyssum and dianthus for instant colour.
  • Prune summer-flowering perennials that have finished flowering, remove old leaves, mulch with compost and water regularly.
  • Lift and divide overcrowded evergreen Agapanthus, daylilies and summer flowering red hot pokers.
  • Now is the time to take hardwood cuttings of trees, shrubs and climbers. Check out the how to guide below to see how it's done.
  • Prune evergreen hedges that have finished flowering in summer.
  • It is the perfect time to plant trees, shrubs and roses as the roots still have time to settle in and establish before the winter cold arrives.
A plant in a pot

Rose care

  • Apply a final feed (2:3:4 or 3:1:5) to your roses to or a dose of potassium sulphate to give your roses a boost before winter.
  • Remove spent blooms and pinch out growing tips.
  • For more rose care advice check out @ludwigsroses' step-by-step rose care guide for April.
A close up of a flower

Food garden

  • Pull up summer crops that have finished bearing and compost those that are healthy.
  • Sow or plant seedlings of these veggies for a bountiful winter harvest:
Asian greens
Brassica crops
Root crops
And sow seeds of beans and peas.
  • Give growing garlic a go! Select a sunny area in your garden, with well-draining soil, and plant cloves 12 cm apart and 7 cm deep. Cover with a thin layer of soil, just enough to cover the clove nose, and water regularly.
A close up of a hand
  • Collect seeds of flowering herbs like coriander, dill and fennel, on dry days.
  • Plant cool-season herbs like chives, garlic chives, coriander and rocket.
  • Plant strawberries and water once a week.
  • Feed your citrus trees with a general fertiliser and a handful of Epsom salts per tree.

Pest Patrol

  • Continue to spray your roses against mildew and black spot.
  • Keep an eye out for aphids and leaf miners.
  • These guys love Brassica crops so keep a close eye on the veggie garden.
  • Lawn caterpillars are active at night and create bald patches in the lawn.

Flowering beauties of the month

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