Birds and Wildlife
- Supplement your hummingbird-friendly plants with sugarwater feeders. Use one part sugar and four parts water.
- Plant warm weather bedding plants: lantanas, begonias, firebush, impatiens, portulaca, coleus and zinnias. Periwinkles in late May.
- Resist cool season plants on sale now. That season is over…that’s why they are on sale.
- Maintain your spray program for roses.
- Fertilize the roses this month if not done last month.
- Let bougainvillea get root bound and stressed between waterings for blooms.
- Hibiscus food works well for container-grown plants.
Shade Trees and Shrubs
- Do NOT prune oak trees now.
- You can still plant new shrubs and trees this month if they are container-grown.
- It’s too late to plant bare-root trees now.
- Prune pillar or climbing roses, wisteria, and Carolina jasmine after they flower.
- Remove pansies, snapdragons, dianthus, calendulas, kale and other winter plants when they get ragged.
- Plant caladium tubers after mid‑month. Impatiens, fibrous begonias, and coleus are summertime favorites for shade.
- Do not remove leaves of spring-flowering bulbs. They are feeding the bulbs while they are green.
- Don’t place plants that have been indoors all winter into direct sunlight.
- Does the lawn need some “fixing?” Fix the problem and not the symptoms. Replace dead grass with the same kind of grass.
- Fertilize lawn using a slow-release lawn fertilizer with a ratio of 3-1-2 or 4-1-2 NPK—Nitrogen (N), Phosphorus (P) and Potassium (K)—for example, 18-6-12, 19-5-9, 20-6-12. If you use organic fertilizer, use about twice as much.
- Don’t start automatic sprinkler systems unless we haven’t had rain for at least 2 weeks.
Fruits and Nuts
- There is still time to thin late-season peaches, apples and plums. Thin to one fruit per 6-8 inches of stem.
- Fertilize pecan trees in early April with 21-0-0 (1 lb. per inch of trunk diameter) to encourage good nut production.
- Plant vegetables such as tomatoes, sweet corn, snap beans and peppers. You can also plant cucumbers, lima or butter beans, cantaloupe, okra, southern peas, pumpkin, squash, peanuts and watermelon.
- Write down what, when, and where you plant what so you will know next time.
- Plant eggplant, green beans, sweet corn, radishes, and carrots later in the month.
- Mulch around the veggies with leaves, straw, or hay.
- Harvest potatoes after they start blooming.
- Control snails, slugs and pill bugs with baits or beer traps.
- Thinning vegetables is one of the most important follow‑up activities in gardening. Use drip irrigation on veggies.
Seasonal Gardening Checklist Prepared by Tom Harris, Ph.D., Honorary BCMG