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April Garden Tips

Perennials, Annuals and Vegetables Clean out spent window boxes & brighten them with colorful annuals & early blooming perennials. Check containers for plants that did not survive the winter. Top-dress with compost. Or better yet, unpot the entire plant, check the rootball for overcrowding or girdling. If root-bound, pot up to a larger container or plant out in the garden. If not root-bound, clear the drainage hole of any obstructions, refresh the potting mix & add a little fertilizer such as Dr. Earth Bud & Bloom & then place the revitalized plant back into the container. Hesitant to tackle this task? Stop by the nursery and we’ll show you how. Take wintered-over fuchsias & geraniums out of hiding. Cut them back (down to the rim of the container, if in a hanging basket) Lift them out of the container & repot with fresh soil, no need to change containers as long as the plant isn't root-bound. Feed with an organic, slow-release fertilizer. It will be broken down & ready for the plant when it begins this year's growth. Resist the urge to cut down the foliage of tulips & daffodils after they are finished blooming! The bulbs need to store the nutrients for next year's growth & bloom. Unsightly for a time, perhaps, but once the leaves are at least halfway died back they can be trimmed. Explore succession planting & find a perennial partner that will mask the fading bulb foliage. Slugs... need we say more? We recommend using Sluggo (not harmful to pets or birds) to stop the damage from these garden pests. Early treatment is best before the slug population takes off! It is time to feed those perennials that have started to show themselves in earnest & begin their spring growth spurt. G & B All-Purpose (4-4-4) or Rose & Flower (5-7-2) fertilizer will work well for most plantings. Be careful not to burn or break emerging foliage. Drop by the nursery if you have any questions about feeding specific plants. While the weather is still somewhat dry, prepare vegetable beds for later planting. Go ahead & plant salad greens this month, though, along with spinach, chard & other leafy vegetables (watch out for slugs). April is the month to start your seeds for warm season vegetables like: tomatoes, peppers & squash! Make sure to start them indoors & typical target date for planting in the garden is late May to early June. We Carry Irish Eyes Seeds Lawn Care Bring out the lawn mower . You may have noticed that the lawn has taken a leap in height with these warmer days. It's better to start early in the season with the mower set high than to tackle wet thick grass. Leave the clippings on the ground to break down & provide some free nitrogen for the soil. Fertilize, de-thatch, & aerate! This month is perfect for fertilizing the lawn, we recommend G & B Lawn Fertilizer. Test the pH of the soil (we carry the test kits at the Nursery!) & add lime if it's too acidic. Trees, Shrubs and Fruit Time to feed Roses & other hungry shrubs, too! Side-dress the roses with G & B Rose & Flower Food for a season of healthy growth. Watch out for black spot & powdery mildew — catch it before it sets in & treat your plants to a neem oil product, like Dr. Earth Fungicide. If you do see black spot or powdery mildew on your rose leaves, remove the diseased leaves & discard them in the trash bin to decrease the possibility of it spreading to other roses & plants in your garden. Plant a tree (or large shrub) for Arbor Day (April 30th)! Our selection is better than ever, with a wide range of types & sizes to choose from! Fertilize those early-spring bloomers that are about done for this year, but gathering nutrients to store up for next year's show, like Forsythias & Camellias. When their bloom is finished, most likely by the end of the month, it is the perfect time to prune them as well, before they set buds for next year's flowers. Most Bamboo enter their crazy spring growth spurt when soil temperatures reach 55-60F. So divide and thin now for the healthiest and most attractive plantings. General Tips Though we've had our share of precipitation coming into this spring, it is important to get into the water-wise gardening habit! Wise water use is a good idea at any time, and efficient use of water is important not only for the preservation of resources and the health of your plants, but for the health of your summer water bills, as well! — we are well-stocked and ready to help you get started! Here's a list for ways to more efficiently use water in your garden: Mulch. Water deeply and less frequently, instead of often and shallowly. Water early in the day. If you use sprinklers, don't set them so high that they give off a mist, which will just uselessly evaporate away. Consider getting a timer for your hoses and set them to water early in the morning ,when there is less evaporation and plenty of time for the foliage to dry.

Make your thumb even greener. Follow some Classic Tips.


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Tips for April

Perennials, Annuals and Vegetables:
Clean out spent window boxes and brighten them with colorful, hardy annuals and early blooming perennials. Check containers for plants that did not survive the winter. Topdress with compost. Or better yet, unpot the entire plant, check for rootballs for overcrowding or girdling. If rootbound, pot up to a larger container or plant out in the garden. If not rootbound, clear the drainage hole of any obstructions, refresh the potting mix and add a little fertilizer such as Gardener & Bloome Bud & Bloom and then place the revitalized plant back into the container.

Take wintered-over fuchsias and geraniums out of hiding. Cut them back (down to the rim of the container, if in a hanging basket) Lift them out of the container and repot with fresh soil, no need to change containers as long as the plant isn't root-bound. Feed with an organic, slow-release fertilizer. It will be broken down and ready for the plant when it begins this year's growth.

Resist the urge to cut down or tie up the foliage of tulips and daffodils after they are finished blooming! The bulbs extract and store the nutrients from the leaves for next year's growth and bloom, so by cutting back too soon you risk next year's flowers and by tying them up you decrease their ability to photosynthesize and create the food they need to store. Also did you know that most Tulips only last a few years anyway? Unsightly for a time, perhaps, but once the leaves are at least halfway died back they can be trimmed. Explore succession planting and find a perennial partner that will mask the fading bulb foliage.

Epimediums are delicate looking but tough drought-tolerant shade perennials very useful for underplanting shrubs. Evergreen forms such as Epimedium x versicolor 'Frohnleiten' have dainty yellow four-petaled flowers that dangle from narrow upright stems and leaves that toughen to a leathery texture over winter. A great groundcover epimedium, this old variety has proven its garden worthiness as a weed suppressor and holds its deep yellow flowers well above the leaves. Epimedium x versicolor 'Sulphureum' is another worthy evergreen groundcover with pale yellow flowers and red-toned new foliage. The mature foliage of epimediums should be cut back by late February for premium aesthetics. Warning, this plant genus has been known to be addictive to plant collectors.

Slugs... We have seen them already need we say more? We recommend using "Sluggo" to stop the damage from these garden pests (not harmful to pets or birds).

It is time to feed those perennials that have started to show themselves in earnest and begin their spring growth spurt. We carry Gardener & Bloome Bud & Bloom 3-7-4. Drop by the nursery if you have any questions about feeding specific plants.

While the weather is still somewhat dry, prepare vegetable beds with compost for later plantings. Go ahead and plant salad greens this month, though, along with spinach, chard and other leafy vegetables (watch out for slugs). We have cool season veggie starts, Renee's Seeds are in. Late April is the time to start your seeds for warm season vegetables like tomatoes, peppers and squash! Make sure to start them indoors and typical target date for planting in the garden is late May to early June.

Lawn Care:
Bring out the lawn mower. You may have noticed that the lawn has taken a leap in height with these warmer days. It's better to start early in the season with the mower set high than to tackle wet thick grass. Leave the clippings on the ground to break down and provide some free nitrogen for the soil.

Fertilize, de-thatch, and aerate! This month is perfect for fertilizing the lawn. We carry 18# Gardener & Bloome Organic Lawn Fertilizer. Test the pH of the soil (we carry the test kits at the Nursery!) and add lime if it's too acidic.

Trees, Shrubs and Fruit:
Time to feed Rhododendrons and other hungry shrubs, too! Side-dress the rhododendrons with Gardener & Bloome Rhododendron/Azalea/Camellia fertilizer for a season of healthy growth. Watch out for black spot and powdery mildew — catch it before it sets in and treat your plants to a neem oil product, like Green Light Rose Defense. If you do see black spot or powdery mildew on your rose leaves, remove the diseased leaves and discard them in the trash bin to decrease the possibility of it spreading to other roses and plants in your garden.

Plant a tree for Washington state Arbor Day on April 14th! Our selection this month is terrific, with a wide range of varieties and sizes to choose from. Styrax japonicus 'Snowcone' is a pyramid form tree that fits great in smaller spaces and has a mature height of 25 feet and spread of 20 feet. This stunning tree present darker green foliage which contrasts nicely with the delicate white bell shaped flowers that bloom in the late Spring. This great plant pick will be sure to please your bees & butterflies and will do best in a full sun spot. This tree also sports bright yellow in the Fall. National Arbor day is April 30th 20% off 1 regular priced tree.

Camellia japonica are reaching their peak now. Don't let the 20-foot pepto-bismol pink monsters of bygone eras deter you from this wonderful easy-care shrub. Japanese Camellias are useful both as a cut flower and as an excellent evergreen hedge. The rose-like true-red variety 'Nuccio's Bella Rossa' steals hearts every year. 'Debutante' has a soft pink double bloom with a frilly center. The nursery stocks several varieties and some are available in espaliered or patio tree form.

Fertilize those early-spring bloomers like Rhododendron, Camellia and Pieris that are past their peak for this year with Gardener & Bloome Rhododendron/Camellia/Azalea, allowing them to gather nutrients to store up for next year's show. When their blooms are finished, it is the perfect time to prune them as well, before they set buds for next year's flowers.

Most Bamboo enter their crazy spring growth spurt when soil temperatures reach 55-60F. So divide and thin now for the healthiest and most attractive plantings. We offer some nice clumping varieties also so stop by and check them out.

General Tips:
Even though we have had plenty of precipitation coming into this spring, it is still important to get into the water-wise gardening habit! Wise water use is a good idea at any time, and efficient use of water is important not only for the preservation of resources and the health of your plants, but for the health of your summer water bills, as well! Think about switching your sprinkler system to one of soaker hoses or drip irrigation — we are well-stocked and ready to help you get started!

Here's a list for ways to more efficiently use water in your garden:
Mulch.
Water deeply and less frequently, instead of often and shallowly.
Water early in the day.
Wherever you can, use soaker hoses or drip irrigation system.
If you use sprinklers, don't set them so high that they give off a mist, which will just uselessly evaporate away.

Happy Gardening from Classic Nursery and Landscape!