Gardeners Grow Together Week 18, April, 2021: Crunch Time!



Welcome to my special gardening page for those of you who like to garden yourselves! Each week, I will make suggestions as to what gardening tasks we need to do every week during the growing season. It will help keep you on track--as well as myself!


To keep things simple, I am using the year's weekly number, Week #1 through #52 (example: the week of January 1 is Week #1), instead of specific dates.


So, come on! Let's get our hands dirty!

Week 18:

It's a Busy Week Ahead!


The week ahead is a very important one. It is the last week we really have to set ourselves up for a successful growing season. Timing is everything right now.


I have a lot of information this week depending on the types of plants you might be working with in your garden, so don't be overwhelmed or discouraged by this list if you aren't doing it ALL! We're all on our own journey in our gardens and I want you to be successful! If you need clarification on anything, please leave your questions in the comments below.


Jump to Next Steps for Vegetables:

Gourds and Squash

Salad Greens

Tomatoes and Peppers


Jump to Next Steps for Flowers:

Divide and Transplant Perennials

Transplant Self-sown Seedlings

Cuttings

Buy Annual Flowers to Grow-on

Sow Unusual Annual Climbers

In the Veggie Patch


Gourds and Squash

It's time to start courgettes (zucchini), summer squash, winter squash, pumpkins, cucumbers, beans, and tender herbs, like basil, in the house for a head start. These all germinate quickly and grow fast, so these are fun for kids to grow. Squash come in scores of different shapes, sizes, colors and flavors. Go crazy! Have some fun! Just remember that most need a lot of room to grow, so keep that in mind. The squash with smaller fruit can be grown vertically on some kind of support, too, if you have limited space. Gourds can be fun for kids of all ages, as well. They come in a wide range of sizes and weird and wonderful shapes. Most of these are vines, and love to scramble up fences and trees. Then, in winter, you will have lots of fun gourd craft projects to do!

Salad Greens

Plant a succession planting of salad greens, radish, green onion, beet and pea seeds outside for a second flush of sweet, early crops before the hot weather sets in. Planting fewer seeds, more often, prevents of glut of vegetables all at once and extends the season.


Tomatoes and Peppers

Check your tomato and pepper plants. Pop one out of the pot and check out the roots see if they need to be moved into larger pots. Don't be tempted to plant them outside before May 15th (June 1st is better), so make sure they have plenty of room to grow in their pots. Start fertilizing them once a week with a 1/4 strength liquid organic tomato fertilizer. Also make sure they are getting good strong light. Take them outside during warm days to a protected area so they can grow strong and be acclimated more to the outside when they finally are planted in the garden. Bring them in at night, for now, however.

In the Flower Garden


Divide and Transplant Perennials

Foxgloves

Finish dividing and transplanting perennials. This is really the last week to do it to be assured you will get flowers this year. Always revitalize the soil with compost before replanting.


Transplant Self-sown Seedlings

Foxgloves, Larkspur, Wall Flowers, Salvias and Sweet William all tend to self seed in the garden. Look closely where you planted these last year and chances are there will be seedlings growing. Water thoroughly, then lift the seedlings carefully with a trowel, taking a good amount of soil with it. Then plant it in it's new spot, pressing in gently with your fingers. Water in again.


Cuttings

Check any cuttings you have taken to see if they have rooted yet. If they have and you have rooted several in one pot, transplant them into their own 3-1/2" to 4" pot. This should be large enough for most plants for the next month until they are planted out into the garden.


Buy Annual Flowers to Grow-on

Start buying annual bedding plants in plug trays, if you have the room and sufficient light to grow them on inside until its safe to plant out. This way, you can find the most and best varieties before everyone else! If you can transplant them into bigger pots, that would be ideal. Then you will have larger plants to put out when the time is right, saving you lots of money! A small plug plant will cost you about $.30 a piece, where as the same plant in a 3" pot will cost you as much as $4!


Sow Unusual Annual Climbers

Easy to grow Black Eyed Susan vine

Sow unusual annual climbers indoors for a cheap and rapid way to cover an eyesore, like an ugly wall, fence or compost bin. Or add height and interest to your garden or patio, by letting them scramble up trees and shrubs, fence, arbor or other support. Most of these plants, except for Sweet Peas, are very tender and shouldn't be planted outside until the first of June.


So, as you can see, getting this next week right can set us up for a great summer of beautiful color!


Now, let's get busy!

If you have any questions, put them in the comments below!


~Lee Ann~

Valmont Valley Farm

Where Beautiful Magic is Always in Bloom


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