Spring has sprung!! Hard to believe I know but the signs are there, early flowering bulbs are in full bloom spring-flowering shrubs and trees are bursting bud and leaf despite the weather.
For vegetable and fruit growers, especially those lucky enough to have a heated greenhouse seed planting has been underway for some time, but you can easily catch up and continue to expand planting.
Heated greenhouses or propagators: sow seeds for celery, cucumber, tomato, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower and aubergine. Also, the ideal time to sow tender herbs such as basil and coriander
Cold greenhouse or frame: early salad crops such as lettuce, spring onion and radish
Directly into soil: (postpone to nearer the end of the month if your soil is a heavy clay as this will hold on to the water and takes longer to warm up) 1st early potatoes, peas, swiss chard, leeks and kale, also shallots and onion sets can be planted in lighter, freer draining soils.
Its also a great time to plant potted cane and bush fruit we have just received our new seasons stock of blackberries, currents raspberries, blueberries and rhubarb to name a few.
Strawberry plants are best left to nearer the end of the month.
Fruit trees if potted can also be established now and even if the trees are young you may still get the benefit of their beautiful spring blossom.
As the month establishes remember to feed. Plants always need a boost in spring to help support all the new growth but this year the heavy rain may also have leached nutrients from the soil.
Check plants for pests, many such as aphids need prolonged cold weather to kill them off. You may be surprised to find them hiding under the leaves of evergreens and succulent bedding plants. Treat with a general purpose spray
Once soils have dried out, weeding can commence. Its definitely better to wait if the current weather continues, as walking over and compacting wet soils just causes more harm than good.
Lets hope that dryer conditions are just around the corner and look forward to the many happy hours of gardening to come.