“Keep your faith in all beautiful things; in the sun when it is hidden, in the Spring when it is gone.”
~ Roy R. Gilson
In our own gardens, believe it or not, the sun is beginning to shine more frequently and the days are getting that bit warmer. Green shoots and bright flowers peep out from the soil, trees are showing their blossom and we can finally spend more time in the garden.
In April many of us are already taking time out in our gardens as the most effective way of relaxing and switching off from the everyday troubles of the world. I said at the start that the sun is shining but April can be known for its mix of sun and showers, quite a sneaky month, still throwing in the odd frost and even hail and snow.
So, it’s another month and another opportunity to get busy in the garden. In this month’s April newsletter we are going to run through all things seeds to sow, top gardening tips for the month and how to keep busy in the garden this coming Easter weekend. There are still many activities (let’s not call them gardening tasks or jobs!) to enjoy in the garden over the next few weeks – we have listed them below, together with some other fun activities, for gardeners of all generations to enjoy over this bank holiday period.
- Sow sweet peas direct where they are to flower and plant out any that you sowed in the autumn, having first hardened them off.
- Deadhead your spring-flowering bulbs and keep them weed-free. Allow the leaves to die down naturally.
- Remove any faded flowers from early-flowering bulbs, especially daffodils.
- Apple trees, pear trees, plum trees and cherry trees will start flowering in April. If as few as 5 to 10% of the flowers set then you will have a good crop so don’t worry too much about flowers dropping.
- Plants kept in containers will appreciate having the top few centimeters of soil replaced with fresh compost mixed with controlled-release fertilizer. Top with a mulch to aid moisture retention.
- Now is the time to sow direct carrots, peas, beetroot, winter cabbages, broccoli, salad crops and much more. Browse through our full range of vegetable seed.
- Now is the time to start hardening off vegetable plants and others that you have been protecting from late frosts. Put them outside for a few hours each day before finally leaving out overnight and planting.
- Houseplants will benefit from increased watering. In just a couple of months, you’ll be able to put them outside for their summer holiday.
- Summer flowering bulbs and dahlias can now be planted. Keep them watered and protect young shoots from rampaging slugs.
- Now is a good time to repair an existing lawn or to sow a new one. Just make sure the sowing area is firm and level.
Fancy more? As much as our April newsletter is full of handy info, check out our Monthly Garden Advice for more tips, tricks and jobs to do each month!
April Flowers to Sow
This April is a busy one when it comes to sowing! It’s time to sow half-hardy flowers including Nemesia, Rudbeckia, Cosmos and French marigold undercover and hardy annuals such as Oxalis and Clarkia can be sown either indoors or outdoors.
New Flower Seed
Don’t mistake this for grass! The Idaho Blue-Eyed Grass Seeds – Moody Blues is a cluster-forming, semi-evergreen plant that bears bright blue flowers with darker petals and golden centres. These flowers are perfect for filling rock garden displays with colour or containers and patio pots. As the Idaho Blue-Eyed Grass Seeds – Moody Blues is so versatile, it can be grown on borders to complement your driveway or at the front of flower borders.
April Veg to Sow
Outdoors, sow carrots, peas, beetroot, winter cabbages, broccoli, salad crops and more. Indoors, marrows, courgettes, pumpkins, squashes and tomatoes can be sown in a heated greenhouse or propagator. Here are a few of our favourites that you could try this month!
These tiny watermelons lookalikes have a refreshing flavour and bags of personality. Plus, their lush vines will produce masses of fruit throughout the summer with a ‘cucumber and lime’ taste, Ready when they are grape-sized and still firm to the touch. Try in salads, pickled whole, or why not explore their cocktail-enhancing prowess? Easy to grow. Vigorous climber/trailer. Pest and drought resistant.
These gorgeous cherry tomatoes came top in our taste tests, thanks to their sweet, juicy flavour which has undertones of honey. You’ll see less fruit splitting than Sungold, with around 150-200 cherry tomatoes on every plant. Expect large, cherry-sized fruit crammed with that delicious flavour, and the orange-yellow colour makes them a striking sight on the plant (and in a salad for that matter…).
New Veg Seed
The Wild Blueberry is a stunning variety that is also known as the Bilberry or European blueberry. Wild Blueberry seeds will produce small, 30cm perennial fruit bushes. These blueberry bushes are great to grow in containers or on a window box due to their smaller size and acid soil-loving nature. Making them great for small space gardening, they are also slow-growing and self-fertile.
Offers this Month – April Newsletter
Whether you’re looking for bumper bedding packs, tasty fruit and veg or garden furniture to sit back and enjoy your outdoor space, we have an offer for you which you can check out straight from our April newsletter. You’ll find the best offers from our catalogues, alongside last-minute deals and exciting seasonal sales.
Community Garden Week
April 5th is the beginning of community garden week and it celebrates the incredible community gardens across the UK. Community gardens come in all shapes and sizes, but most importantly, they bring people together. Working together and inspiring each other, what’s not to love? Our Suttons community spreads up and down the country and you keep us up to date with your gardening antiques on our social media pages and on the blog.
Social Posts of the Month #MySuttonsJourney
We like to feature our gardening community in our monthly newsletter and reflect on some of the social posts you have shared with us every month. Throughout March we saw a Suttons seed delivery box from 1910,
Little man Albert Bibbs with his latest delivery and gourmet window boxes!
Below are our top 5 social posts of the previous month and if you would like the chance to be featured in next month’s newsletter, simply tag us and use the hashtag #MySuttonsJourney.
Follow us on our social media pages and if you tag us with our hashtag, you could be featured in our next monthly newsletter!
Easter Egg Hunt
Do you want to host the ultimate Easter egg hunt? How about one with a gardener’s twist? We have put together a few puns and rhymes to make this years home Easter egg hunt put your families and friends gardening knowledge to the test! Or perhaps just how well they know the garden…
- To find your gift, you need to follow the clues, how about checking your gardening shoes.
- If you want to be fed, a chocolate filled egg, go and look through the gardening shed.
- You won’t always need to search this long and far, because one special treat is by the car.
- I am hiding where you plant your seeds, you will find me somewhere amongst the weeds.
- For a quick win, go and look under the compost bin.
- I sway in the wind and sit quite high, quickly find your egg before the birds in the sky.
- Let’s hope you not too late, there’s one last egg on the garden gate.
- The hunt has come to an end but the sun is still hot, is that a forgotten egg I heard… about to melt on the plot?!
Easter Egg & Spoon Race
A simple classic but sometimes you can’t beat an old school egg and spoon race. Especially when spending easter at home in the garden. The winner could even cop themselves a prize? Chocolate, chocolate and more chocolate…
There’s a few thing you can do to make your egg and spoon race more challenging and competitive – take a look at these options!
Obstacles – Add an obstacle or two to the race. How about some cones or a jump rope? but be careful not to fall and crash into each other!
Relay Race – if there’s a few of you then tag a friend! Set up two or more teams and create a start and end point. But don’t cheat and hold your egg!
Watercress Egg Heads
Cress is super easy to grow, and you can even grow it in eggshells! It grows really quickly and is a great activity to keep the kids busy!
- Collect your egg shells and wash them out thoroughly.
- Place your eggs in sturdy egg cups or back in the egg box ready for the filling.
- Scoop damp compost into the eggs with a teaspoon or soak cotton wool in water and pop inside the egg.
- Sprinkle two pinches of cress seed on top, as evenly as possible.
- Spray a little water on the seeds and leave them on the windowsill to grow!
- Signs of sprouting should appear within within a few days and they should be ready to harvest within 7-10 days.
- To harvest your cress just cut the tops off and enjoy!
Why Not Decorate Your Eggs Too?
Allotment Tips – April Newsletter
Do you or someone you know own an allotment and want to find out helpful hints and tips each month? Lee Senior is an experienced horticultural writer, RHS Yorkshire in Bloom judge and horticultural consultant, who writes a monthly entree on allotment tips each month for Suttons blog. Besides our April newsletter, Lee tackles everything from growing veg, controlling pests and making the most out of your sheds, greenhouses and garden tools.
We hope our April newsletter gives you plenty to get busy with, puts you in the right direction in flowers, lets you know what veg to be planting right now and gives you some easter inspiration to get active in the garden!
Join the Suttons community today and take us with you on your gardening journey – #MySuttonsJourney
In addition to our April newsletter, browse our latest blog posts for gardening advice, how-to guides and insights into new products.