Beaver Valley Probus Club

Master Gardener's Corner - April 2022

March 30, 2022 9:26 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

Things to do in your garden this month—taken from the Ontario Master Gardener Calendar by John Hethrington, Past President, Master Gardeners of Ontario.

Please contact John for more information!

April 2022:

Here are the things to do for your garden in April!

  • Make sure you have done everything you were supposed to do on the March Master Gardener's List
  • Do stretch and bend exercises before you start in the garden. I find skiing muscles have nothing to do with gardening muscles. Take it easy. There are a lot of gardening days before the ski season comes again.
  • I hope you had a chance to spread 19-19-19 general purpose fertilizer over the snow on all your flower beds and shrub boarders before the snow disappeared. It melts down through the snow into the ground as the snow goes away. It and other fertilizers are available at the Co-Op in Markdale, at 10% discount for 599 Members. If you missed this step this year, plan for next winter and buy the fertilizer in the fall.
  • While the snow may be gone, it may be back once or twice in April. If it is, you can still spread the triple 19 as long as it does not get on to the emerging plants, as it may burn them.
  • Organize your compost pile for the new season. Start a new one with the top foot of compost from last year’s pile as a base.
  • As the weather warms and the ground dries, prune back perennials and ornamental grasses to 1” to 2” from the ground. Collect the dead material and put it on your new compost pile. Shred it, if you can.
  • Push any plants that the frost has heaved back into place.
  • Prepare garden beds for planting. Dig in compost, and/or manure, and/or other organic material around each plant. Remove any weeds that have come through from last fall. When you have cleaned up the beds, ADD 3” TO 4” OF MULCH to control weeds this summer.
  • Remove rose protection. For Hybrid Teas, prune back to 6” or 8”and apply dormant oil spray before the buds break.
  • Apply dormant oil spray to shrubs like euonymus that may have suffered from scale last year. Do it before the buds break.
  • Prepare your vegetable garden with a good digging. Add compost, if you have it. Mid-month, plant the seeds of cool-weather vegetables like peas, spinach, lettuce, onions, beets. Plant seeds of frost resistant annuals like larkspur, sweet peas and calendulas.
  • When dry, rake your lawn vigorously to remove any thatch; repair damage with weed-free topsoil. Add grass seed to bare spots. Keep moist.
  • Fertilize your lawn with slow-release high nitrogen fertilizer (the first of the 3 numbers on the bag). Slow-release urea costs more, but it’s worth it, as it should last until the fall.
  • Apply crabgrass pre-emergence herbicide to your lawn, if required.
  • When spring finally comes, plant trees, shrubs, perennials and biennials in your garden. No need to wait until May 24th for perennials, that’s for annuals. It may be the first week in June before you can get frost tender annuals safely into the ground.
  • Re-fill your pots and planters with compost. Put empty plastic bottles with tops at the bottom of large pots. You will need less soil and they will be lighter to move. Add slow-release plant food to the top 4 inches.
  • Then plant frost-resistant pansies NOW for a little spring colour.
  • Start mowing your lawn only as needed. Keep it long.
  • Save Saturday June 11th for the St. George’s, Anglican Parish of the Blue Mountains, giant annual Plant Sale on the church grounds. There will be over 1,200 perennials, shrubs and tomato plants to choose from, plus free gardening advice from 599 Garden Club experts.

John Hethrington, Past President, Master Gardeners of Ontario

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Beaver Valley PROBUS Club

Box 148, Clarksburg ON N0H1J0

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