Welcome to the first full month of spring! We’ve got warmer days, but we can still have cool, even frosty, nights (average last frost date for Willamette Valley is April 15th). It’s not yet time for tomatoes, but there’s a lot you can enjoy during this month.
For Fresh Color
Lots of cool-season annuals can be planted this month, especially during the second half. Sow seeds for sweet peas and nasturtiums now; wait to plant sunflowers until May. Replenish your containers this month—doing it now will mean full, beautiful pots this spring and summer. If you are in a rush or don’t want to make your own, just stop into one of our garden centers and grab a pre-planted container to drop into an empty decorative pot at home or just enjoy on your front porch or patio. Fertilize spring bulbs again after flowering; remove seed heads as they form, but allow foliage to turn yellow and die back naturally.
- For seeds and starts, use G&B Potting Soil or Eden Valley Potting Soil, plus Sluggo slug control
- For bulbs and containers, use G&B Paradise or all-purpose fertilizer
For the Lawn & Landscape
Our lawns are recovering from winter, so they will appreciate a feeding this month. If you have moss in your lawn, treat it now and apply lime if you haven’t done so already. It’s a good month to over-seed to fill in bare spots or thicken up a lawn that may be too thin. If you use a weed and feed, this is the month it will be most effective.
- G&B Natural Lawn Food, Moss Out for Lawns, Super Sweet Dolomite Lime, grass seed for sun/part-shade, G&B Soil Building Conditioner for seed cover
Roses, perennials, trees and shrubs, including established plantings, can be fertilized this month. We recommend G&B All-Purpose Fertilizer or Paradise blend—this will not only feed your plants, but it will also improve the soil they live in with beneficial microbes and fungi.
Begin watching Rhododendrons and Azaleas towards the end of the month for signs of lace bug hatching and/or damage. Contact us to discuss treatment options with one of our garden problem-solvers.
Plant a tree to celebrate Earth Day (April 22nd) and Arbor Day (April 24th).
For the Edible Garden
Don’t forget garden seeds—we carry a great selection, and it’s a way to stretch your gardening budget. Our staff will gladly help you select seeds, show you how to start your plants from seeds, and let you know what to sow directly in the ground and what seeds you can start indoors.
- Seed Starting Mix, Seed starting trays, Bu’s Brew Compost Tea, G&B liquid fertilizer, seed packets
Plant your salad garden this month—greens, radishes, carrots, herbs, potatoes, beets. It’s also time for broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, kale, and cabbage; sow seeds or plant starts in 2-3 week intervals for a staggered harvest.
- Protect tender new shoots from slugs with Sluggo or Sluggo Plus
- Use a floating row cover/Harvest Guard to protect from insects as well as for light frost protection
Wait until May for warm season veggies like tomatoes and peppers—it’s still too cool for plants that like warm nights!
In the Garden Shed
Monitor the early growth on roses and fruit trees for signs of disease or insect problems. Never run out of Sluggo! Check on overwintered fuchsias and other tender plants in storage; slowly bring them out from protection as weather warms. Keep cloches, cold-frames, burlap, and frost blankets handy for late freezes and young plant protection.
Basic Pruning List
Prune early-spring flowering shrubs after flowers fade; tip back to control size and remove some of the oldest canes at the base of the plant (e.g. forsythia, flowering quince, ribes/flowering currant). If you haven’t pruned your roses… do it now!
Does your garden still have a lot of moss growing? Make the most of it by harvesting the best sheets of lush green moss to make Kokedama/string gardens. Sign up for one of our workshops or check out our Kokedama blog or our YouTube video for instructions.
- Bonsai soil, peat moss, Bentonite clay, green moss, sphagnum moss, string or jute twine, indoor plants or suitable outdoor plants for dry shade, and hooks to hang them from