April Garden Maintenance: Upper Midwest Gardening Tasks

Wheelbarrow Full Of Branch Trimmings In The Garden
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Upper Midwest gardening really starts to get going in April. The seeds have been started for the vegetable garden, bulbs are blooming, and now it’s time to start thinking about the rest of the growing season. Add these things to your garden to-do list for April.

April Gardening Tasks for the Upper Midwest

If you’re itching to get your hands in the dirt and on plants, April is a good time to get started on several important growing chores.

  • April is the perfect time in this region to use a pre-emergent weed killer. You can apply these products to beds to keep weeds down throughout the growing season. Get your vegetable garden ready now. Whether you’re building new raised beds or using existing beds, now is the time to prepare the soil.
  • Put in your cool season annuals. Pansies, lobelia, and violas are hardy enough to put in beds or containers now.
  • Divide and transplant any perennials that need thinning or moving. One task you should wait on is mulching beds. Wait until May for the soil to warm up some more.

April Garden Maintenance Tips

While the active growing season is really getting underway, enough has grown at this point that it’s already time to start maintenance chores.  

  • Tidy up spring bulbs by clipping off the spent flowers. Let the leaves stay in place until they begin to brown. This is important for collecting energy for next year’s bloom. Those bulb leaves don’t look great, so put in some annuals to hide them.
  • Cut back last year’s perennials if you haven’t done so already. Wait to prune spring flowering trees and shrubs until they are done blooming.
  • If you have a decorative pond, do a spring cleaning by dredging it. You can put the material in a compost pile.
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