April Hobby Gardening Checklist

April is flying by- and you know what they say! April Showers bring May Flowers- what do May Flowers bring? Pilgrims! But seriously, the rain we get in Western Washington during the month of April allows our beautiful May flowers to grow, and bring us color, joy, and food for the next months. 

Feeling overwhelmed by what to get done this month? BBP has put together a cohesive list for you that is easy to accomplish once its started. Just take each task one at a time. 

  1. Clear debris: Start by cleaning up any debris that accumulated over the winter months, such as fallen leaves, dead branches, and other debris. I wait as long as I can to clear debris- little bugs lay their nests in leaves! Not to mention, I like having the extra mulch to protect my plants and keep moisture in my soil! My succulents happen to be against my house, and attract a lot leaves! I cleared them the first week of April from debris and got to see all the new babies!

  2. Prepare the soil: Spring is the perfect time to prepare the soil for planting. Start by raking the soil to remove any debris and then add organic matter such as compost, manure or peat moss to enrich the soil.

  3. Test soil pH: Test your soil pH to determine whether it's acidic or alkaline, and then adjust it accordingly. Most plants prefer a pH range of 6.0 to 7.0.

  4. Plan and plant: Plan your garden layout and decide what you want to plant. April is a great time to plant cool-season crops such as lettuce, spinach, peas, and carrots.

  5. Mulch: Mulch around the base of plants to help retain moisture and control weeds. Use organic mulch such as shredded leaves, wood chips or straw.

  6. Watering: Water newly planted seeds or transplants frequently, as they need consistent moisture to germinate and establish.

  7. Fertilize: Fertilize your plants as needed. Be sure to follow package instructions and avoid over-fertilizing, which can damage plants.

  8. Pest control: Keep an eye out for pests such as aphids, spider mites, and whiteflies. Use natural pest control methods such as insecticidal soap or neem oil to control them. Another great trick is companion planting and using fragrant herbs that naturally deter certain pests! We will blogging about that in a few weeks!

  9. Prune: Prune back any dead or damaged branches from trees and shrubs- some plants like to be pruned in the fall. So be sure to check your varieties prior to trimming away! I have fallen behind on trimming my Cherry tree, so one year I had to trim it back further than I wanted to. However, it bounced back and is bearing more fruit now. I am excited the growth over the next couple of weeks!

  10. Harvest: If you planted cool-season crops last fall, they may be ready to harvest now. Be sure to harvest them promptly to ensure they're at their peak flavor and texture. 

  11. If you haven't already, now is an excellent time  to repot and fertilize your indoor plants and adjust their location to accommodate any changes in the amount of light that comes through your windows.

By following these tasks, you can ensure that your garden is healthy, vibrant, and productive throughout the spring and summer months. My favorite part of April is having an excuse to play in the mud, and use creative vision to imagine what the month of May will look like outside my window!