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MID-ATLANTIC WEATHER WATCH FOR APRIL

Fair and colder (1,2,3,4,5)with showers (6,7,8). Fair and cool (9,10,11,12,13,14,15) with more showers (16,17); fair and cool again (18,19) with yet more showers (20,21) turning fair and mild ( 22,23,24) with again, more April showers in the southern part of the region (25,26).  The month ends with fair and much cooler weather (27,28,29,30). 

GARDENING ACTIVITIES

FOR APRIL 



A THOUGHT 
FOR TODAY'S LIVING 

    "While the truth may be painful 
     to hear today, the wise man will 
     benefit from it tomorrow”

               John Gruber (1768--1857)
  

APRIL GARDENING ACTIVITIES

N

ow is the time to do some serious Spring "cleaning” in the garden. Trim back dead foliage and gather up winter’s detritus, such as small branches and excess leaves.  

Get the lawn ready by treating it with some pre-emergent crabgrass killer right after forsythia bloom. Don’t do this if you plan to seed your lawn with fescue grass.  The pre-emergent will prevent that type of grass seed from germinating. 

Trees and shrubs like Azaleas, Rhododendrons, Spiraea, and Viburnums planted, if planted now, will provide some beautiful late Spring color. 

Set out annuals and other perennials now. Cool season vegetables, such as spinach, lettuce, peas, broccoli, cauliflower, and beets can be planted as soon as the soil can be worked. 

A good test of "soil readiness” is to take a handful of soil and squeeze it. If it remains in a ball, it’s too moist and should be allowed to dry further. If it crumbles, start planting! 

Look for and remove any tent caterpillars that have appeared (or signs of their presence like the start of webs in branches. 

Water new plantings and blooming shrubs (such as azaleas & rhododendron) regularly. Don't forget to water plants under overhangs. 

To keep your Easter lilies blooming longer; place them in indirect sunlight in a cool room. When the flowers open up, pinch off the yellow anthers. Once your blooms have faded and all danger of frost has passed, remove the lily from its pot and plant it in a sunny spot in the garden. Easter Lilies like lots of water and good drainage. Be sure to mulch the roots of the plants over winter and remove the mulch again in spring. You'll enjoy your Easter Lilies for years to come. 

The best way to control pests in your garden is to plant resistant varieties. Garlic and pepper sprays, row covers and wood ashes are other effective natural methods for guarding your garden against unwanted visitors. 

Test your underground sprinkling system by monitoring a full cycle to make sure it is still operating correctly. Inspect all sprinkler heads for cleaning, adjustment, or replacement. 

Set out annuals, perennials, and other bedding plants in late April and remember to apply a balanced fertilizer.

Fertilize winter planted vegetables early in the month and after any danger of frost, begin planting warm season vegetables.  

To keep your Easter lilies blooming longer; place them in indirect sunlight in a cool room. When the flowers open up, pinch off the yellow anthers. Once your blooms have faded and all danger of frost has passed, remove the lily from its pot and plant it in a sunny spot in the garden. Easter Lilies like lots of water and good drainage. Be sure to mulch the roots of the plants over winter and remove the mulch again in spring. You'll enjoy your Easter Lilies for years to come. 

The best way to control pests in your garden is to plant resistant varieties. Garlic and pepper sprays, row covers and wood ashes are other effective natural methods for guarding your garden against unwanted visitors.