Gardening advice for April

By Paul Hervey-Brookes

At long last Spring has arrived and so has the nagging question 'where do I begin?' This is the month to plant summer bulbs and annual flower seeds in the garden. Bulbs that have finished flowering can be deadheaded but the green foliage should be left for a few weeks as it provides food for the bulb for flowering next year. Feed them with a liquid feed or bonemeal Perennials can be divided now and the additional plants moved to a new area of the garden.

Bird feeders can be quite expensive but you can make your own. For this you will need plastic drink bottles,scissors,string and bird seed.

Cut a hole in the side of the bottle to allow the birds to get the seeds easily but not too big as the seeds will fall out. Make a few holes in the bottom to allow for water to drain out, pierce a hole in the top and thread through the string. Put in the seed and hang in the garden. (If the feeder starts to wear out or grow mould it an easily be changed for a new one)

Bird feeders can be made simply from a variety of recyclable materials. Use up your pumpkin from Halloween by filling it with seed, old milk cartons can be adapted easily , glue a cup to a saucer and hang from a branch, or even use the husk of an old coconut and pine cones dipped in the food mixture!

Birds also need feeding in the summer as after nesting they have little beaks to feed! Old cardboard roll tubes are ideal for this. Spread peanut butter onto the tubes and then roll in birdseed. these can be threaded onto branches or hung from the shed.

With all of these please be aware of nut allergies.

Meet the author

Paul Hervey-Brookes

Paul had his own highly successful landscape design business, and has also designed a range of gardening gifts for Marks & Spencers.

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