Author: Martin Blunn, Solitionize Global

April is the month where activity for preparing for the summer season really starts. At least your first batch of seedlings should be growing well and may even be ready to be potted out. They still maybe fragile in this early stage of their life so handle with care, especially if you are hardening off. The second or third set of seeds should be in the propagator and ready to start growing, these will be seeds that have an April germination date such as Courgettes, green beans, Broccoli and Kale

Now is also the time to stock up on potting compost, feed and any other supplies you need. Lots of local shops including greengrocers stock compost and young plants if you’ve decided to buy seedlings or plugs.

April should also be the month you prune your stone fruit trees, as explained previously to prevent silver leaf, trees such as plum should be pruned once the growth has started in the spring. That should be the last of the major pruning activities for the year with the exception of Bramble/Blackberry where the runners can be pruned all year round.

All of your winter activity should have your polytunnel/greenhouse in a fit state for seedlings along with the benches and pots cleaned thoroughly. If any of these tasks are still outstanding try and complete them as soon as possible so your not delaying any of your growing activities. If you haven’t managed to fertilise yet with manure or compost there is still time to dig into the beds.

Now is also time to prepare your beds for seeds that can be planted directly outside. Start sowing crops like spinach, remember to sow in small batches so you don’t end up with too much at one time. Remember that you should have a record of what was planted where and should have planned crop rotation to ensure that all the nutrients are not exhausted in one area by growing for example legumes over and over gain in the same patch.

Now is also the time to start feeding the strawberries, ideally use a liquid feed every 7 days or so to help produce lots of large juicy strawberries, if available liquid seaweed works really well