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April Showers and May Flowers
Dated: April 23 2021
If you want May flowers, you’re going to need to do some gardening chores during the April showers! This list will get your garden looking top-notch for Spring!
What to Fertilize
Fertilize shrubs if not done in March.
Once you can determine whether your fruit trees have any fruit, you can decide how much fertilizer to give them.
Clean up and fertilize bulbs.
If you haven’t already done so, apply some fertilizer around your trees and shrubs. In the absence of a soil test report recommendation, a 5-10-10 fertilizer can be applied according to label directions.
What to Plant
Start sowing seeds outdoors for warm-season vegetables
Many gardeners prefer to transplant azaleas in April so they can group the plants according to their flower color.
The following vegetables can be planted this month: beets, cabbage, Chinese cabbage, Swiss chard, broccoli, cauliflower, onion, and potatoes.
Plant summer annual flowers now for that splash of color all summer long.
What to Prune
Thin fruit trees.
Remove foliage if it has started to yellow.
Prune spring-flowering plants like azalea, lilac, forsythia, spirea, and weigela after the flowers fade.
Prune berry-producing shrubs like holly and pyracantha while in flower to prevent complete removal of all of this season’s berries.
If needed, trim spring-flowering trees like Bradford pear, flowering cherry, and redbud.
Cut out any winter damage that may have occurred this year.
Observe the following landscape shrubs for the following insect pests: azalea-lace bug, boxwood-leaf miner, euonymus-scale, hemlock and juniper-spruce mites and spray as needed. Hybrid rhododendron should be sprayed for borers annually.
Spray iris beds for iris borers.
Treat broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower for worms as needed. An organic product containing BT is recommended. Spray your squash plants at first bloom near the base of the stem to control squash vine borer. Continue through June 1 and use only the recommended insecticide.
Spray your apple and pear trees with streptomycin for control of fireblight while the trees are in bloom. Apply two times, once at early bloom and a second treatment at full bloom. In wet spring weather consider the third application.
Start a fungicide spray program for your bunch of grapes this month. Follow with weekly sprays.
Continue with the rose spray program.
Begin weekly tree fruit sprays after flower petals fall.
With the exception of borer insects, always scout your landscape plants before spraying. Pests may not be present.
Maintain mowing height of fescue and bluegrass at 3 inches.
Do NOT fertilize cool-season lawns such as tall fescue or Kentucky bluegrass anymore this spring. April is the first month to fertilize zoysia lawns.
This is a good time to layer new plants by lowering a branch of your favorite shrubs and covering it with soil and a stone.
Visit your local garden centers and nurseries to see what plants and products are available.
Transfer houseplants back outdoors for fresh air and rainfall.
Work on managing mulch. Mulch all of your landscape plants as needed. Pine needles, cypress mulch, and pine bark are good mulches. Pine bark, cypress mulch, pine needles, and hardwood bark are good mulches.
Prepare labels for all new plants and keep records on how well they perform.
I moved to the Lake Norman area in 1998. I remember thinking when we first drove in that this was the prettiest place I'd ever seen. After buying our first home, I decided I'd love to help others live....