Gardening Tips and Tasks for March and April

Gardening Tips and Tasks for March and April

By Michael Jenkins

There’s no more denying it: spring is here for most of us and it’s time to get started on our gardens in earnest. There’s a lot to do—whether you have a few container plants or a huge landscaped space, this is a time of year full of endless gardening chores. With that in mind, we’d like to present this blog offering some tips, tricks, and general tasks for the next few weeks. Both gardening and the rest of life are busy right now, and we could all use a little help staying on-task and organized. We hope this short list helps you do just that, so let’s dig in!

Gardening starts with the dirt, so it’s time to take care of your soil. What this means will depend on your goals—for veggie gardens and flowers it may be time to aerate the soil, add any amendments or compost needed, and do some early season weeding. For lawns, this is the time for fertilizing, re-seeding, and de-thatching/aerating the lawn. This also gives you a chance to get up close and personal with your garden or lawn and get a sense of the state of things and address any issues before they grow.


It might also be a good time to have your soil tested—in many places your local extension office will do this for free or a small fee. Testing will give you an idea of what your soil may need to give you the results you want all season, so don’t skip this step. Once you have the results you can start making use of fertilizer, compost, and soil amendments to ensure that your dirt is doing its best for you.

As with so many things, before work begins we should all take care of the tools we’ll be using to get the job done. It’s time to clean and sharpen your shears, saws, and other cutting implements, clean and inspect larger hand tools, and have your lawn mower and string trimmer tuned up. We speak from experience here: neglecting tool care early on can cause frustration later in the year. Buy high quality tools, take care of them, and do some regular maintenance before the season starts in full and you’ll have a much easier time.


When things start to warm up, it’s time to prune! How you prune and how much you prune will depend on the plants you have and what you want them to do—we’ve addressed pruning in a bit more depth elsewhere. Removing dead or damaged limbs, branches, and foliage is a good start. Many fruiting and flowering plants only produce on new growth, so do a little research and find out what’s best for the plants in your space. 

If you’re lucky enough to have one, take a look at your compost pile. Compost is a living thing, and like all living things it needs regular and appropriate care. Take a moment early in the spring to give your compost heap a look-over, turn it as needed, and pull the compost you need from it in order to give your plants some nutrition as they start to grow!


It’s time to start thinking about insects. Both bugs and other garden pests are starting to get active at this time of the year, which means that now’s the time to address the issues they raise before they show up in force. There are a number of possible approaches to dealing with unwanted bugs in your garden—we recommend the natural approach—and a variety of ways you can attract and support the bugs you want. Inspect your plants, review how things went last season, and make a plan for the pests and friendly insects that live around you.

Finally, now’s a great time to connect with other gardeners. What that looks like is up to you—making friends with other plant loving folks in your apartment building or your neighborhood is a great start. Getting involved with a local garden or plant club can be a way to meet even more people with the same interests. If you have the opportunity to get involved with a local community garden—or starting one yourself—can expand the hobby and practice of gardening to newcomers and connect you with veteran gardeners. In most places, you’ll find other folks who share this passion, so it’s time to make some new friends!

Spring is here, and it’s time to get out there and get our hands dirty. We hope this list helps you do just that! If we forgot something or if you have a garden tip or trick to share, please let us know in the comments or send us an email. Gardzen is all about community and we love hearing from you!

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