A few hints and tips from our excellent Gardener’s for the month of April:
Things should be moving along pretty quickly now the highlight at the start of the month has to be tulips and with April’s sunshine and showers plants are growing at pace but there are a few things that you can do at the start of the month to reduce your workload later on.
Applying a layer of mulch around trees and perennials before the warmer weather arrives not only will keep the moisture locked in but it will stop a lot of weeds from emerging saving you valuable time later on in the season that can be spent doing other important garden jobs .
Give your plants a feed, trees shrubs and hedges will benefit from a slow release fertiliser. Roses are especially greedy plants feeding will aid flowering in June. You can buy specialist rose fertiliser but any fertiliser that contains a mix of potassium nitrogen and phosphorus will be beneficial.
Sow any hardy annuals now in their final positions these fast growing plants are a cheap way to fill a border with colour during the summer plants such as pot marigolds, Californian poppies and cornflowers are good choices. Those annuals that are a little more tender and don’t like the cold can be sown undercover now in pots and placed out once the risk of frost has passed.
In the vegetable garden it’s time to plant out your potatoes, early crops can be planted at the start of the month and main crops at the end of the month. Courgettes, marrows, squashes and pumpkins can now be sown individually in 5cm pots undercover and tomatoes, aubergines chillies and sweetcorn should now be sown undercover as they need a long growing season to produce their fruits. Don’t forget to thin out any seedlings that were sown in March, in order to reach their full potential plants need space as well as sunshine and showers.
It’s a good time to completely empty any compost bins for mulching. Hibernating animals should now have woken and moved on, but still be careful as you don’t want to spear any frogs or hedgehogs with a garden fork.
Stay safe all, and hope to see you again soon. The next Gardener’s tips will be posted at the beginning of May CBHGT x
Our Gardens Trust is proud to be an RHS Partner Garden, a supporter of the National Gardens Scheme (and their nursing charities) and of the WGFA (Womens Farm and Gardens Association).
All three organisations are doing imaginative and interesting things while closed to the public. Although most of this years RHS shows either cancelled or postponed, you can’t keep a professional gardener from wanting to show off. So the first virtual flower show of the year is run by from fellow Partner Gardens down in Truro, Cornwall. Our Assistant Gardener Tanya, who also trained in photography, has entered some pictures of the Gardens she has taken over these last three weeks tending the site.
She has entered us into 4 of the ‘classes’. Feast your eyes on our and everyone else’s scrumptious pictures on Gary Long’s (of Trewithen Gardens and Parks and Cornish Professional Gardeners Guild) facebook page. https://www.facebook.com/groups/760964517350697/
You can also find shared posts on our own facebook site here.
We’re told the prizes are virtual and will need to be returned before next year’s show 😊. Cornwall is of course ahead of us climate wise and their photos are stunning … but we give them a good run
Some of Tanya’s views below:
The classes are:
Class 1 A view of the garden.
Class 2 Woody plant.
Class 3 Herbaceous plants or bulbs planted or in a pot. The whole plant or single flower
Class 4 Wildflowers, the whole plant or single flower, any plant you see growing wild on your exercise route
Class 5 “Extraordinary Times”
We’ll announce who the winners are after Tuesday 14th – wish us luck 🙂
We had hoped to keep the Gardens open for ‘contactless’ walks and explorations – especially for our younger visitors who like to experience the magic of all the intriguing spaces and easily accessible nature.
Until we can do that again, here are some of the inspirational people and ideas who are now sharing on the web to help keep you and your young ones creative and active at home or in your garden.
Nature Makers, Art sessions for the very young will resume in the Gardens, hopefully later in the year. Here is Faye online https://www.facebook.com/NatureMakers/, https://bookwhen.com/naturemakers#focus=ev-sr62-20200410000000
Jessica Hartshorn, a local illustrator and museum person – some live drawing sessions for you and young people https://www.facebook.com/jessi.illustrates/
B’Opera, Yes baby opera! – Singalong and great music making ideas while you’re cooped up. Let’s hope we can see them in the Gardens sometime. https://www.facebook.com/pg/BoperaBabyOpera/videos/?ref=page_internal
Woodland Trust, We love the Woodland Trust and follow their lead in so many things – here are some specials for ‘lockdown nature hunters’. https://www.woodlandtrust.org.uk/blog/2020/03/kids-nature-activities-self-isolation/
Warwickshire Wildlife Trust, our good neighbours in wildlife. some great blogs about nature spotting form your garden and a place to share your photos. https://www.warwickshirewildlifetrust.org.uk/blog
Free downloads from EarlyYearsResources . Like many commercial companies, they are not open at present, but they have made some lovely free downloadable worksheets, play ideas and colouring for those quieter times at home https://www.earlyyearsresources.co.uk/downloadables-c275/minibeasts-c1570
A second week of lockdown begins – oops no, it’s the third week!
It promises to be a sunny week, which means the flowers and grass will be growing apace. Our Gardeners manage a brief rota of getting in the Gardens from time to time to look over things, making sure things are safe and sound. We all look forward to the photos they share with us.
With such a large lawn and lots of grassed paths in the Upper and Lower Wilderness areas it is no surprise that we normally spend such a lot of time using the ride-on and electric mowers. Although we love the flowers, the grass and its trim precise edges and borders are a major part of what gives the Gardens their style and look. We have been reliant over the years on a few lovely volunteers who absolutely love to wield the long-handled lawn edging shears and the halfmoon cutter. Without their patience and precision our 17th century formality would disappear.
#volunteers #formalgardens #gardentools