- Scope nurseries for favorite annuals and vegetables before the best are taken. Look for tight compact plants with dark green leaves and avoid those that have stretched for the light or seem dry and root-bound. Look under the leaves to check for aphids or whitefly and choose for foliage and not lots of flowers.
- If you've sown seedlings in peat pots, make sure you tear off a strip from the top of each pot and then take off pieces from the sides and bottoms. I've found the pots take too long to disintegrate in the ground and this hampers root growth. If you are planting from plastic seed pots make sure you break up roots before planting..
- Move houseplants by degrees into areas that have more light. Prune any that need attention.
- Harden off all tender plants - ideally put them out during the day and bring them in during the colder nights. An ideal I annually aspire to but rarely accomplish. Eggplants and peppers are more susceptible to cold then tomatoes so if possible keep them warm until the end of May
- Buy seeds of broccoli, cauliflower, lettuce, spinach, cabbage and other greens now for fall sowing as online nurseries and garden centres often run out before you need them.
- Lilacs are coming into their glory. Even if you are not a fan, try planting one of the new Bloomerang cultivars. They bloom in the spring and then again from mid-summer to frost, are deer resistant, fragrant, attract butterflies and are good for cutting to bring indoors for the house. Their bloodline includes four different Lilac species (a hybrid of Syringa patula x macrophylla x meyeri x juliana) which makes them mildew resistant, and they only grow to around 4' so are ideal even for smaller gardens.
Mother's Day today, D day for planting in our area.