Gardening tasks for March and April

A crisp lawn edge is an important design feature

A crisp lawn edge is an important design feature

Yes, you can have a nice garden for just minutes, rather than hours, of work a week. The tricks are: keeping it simple and good timing. There are dozens of lists out there that will tell you about all the 'jobs of the month' that you should be doing, and you are welcome to follow their advice. Here however, we will stick to the basics.


  • last chance for a thorough spring clean before all the plants wake up to life,

  • cut back and trim to shape any evergreens that have outgrown their allotted space,

  • get rid of weeds – with the roots!

  • celebrate the first day of Spring (March, 20) by planting something new (but 'hardy', ground frost is still possible),

  • sow hardy annuals for cheep and easy border fillers,

  • on a dry day, cut the lawn, with blades set higher than normal,

  • straighten lawn edges, preferably with a half-moon cutter; use the off-cuts to repair any bare patches.


  • sprinkle general fertilizer (Growmore or slow-release) in your weed-free(!) borders, 'tickle' it in with a garden fork and cover the ground between plants with a mulch of well-rotted manure or composted bark; let the worms take it down to the roots,

  • put in any plant supports now,

  • tie in climbers as they grow,

  • carry out lawn repairs, whether using seed or turf, but remember to water well in dry weather,

  • boost an existing lawn with a dose of a 'weed-and-feed' (with moss-killer, if needed),

  • if slugs and snails are a big problem, consider buying and applying nematodes.

And finally, how about getting a few strawberry plants, to treat yourself to some fresh fruit later in the year? You'll find that it's money well spent as your plants start producing little baby-plants soon after fruiting.