Use common sense when sowing
This is the start of the main sowing period (March-May) for a huge variety of hardy annuals, half-hardy annuals and vegetables. Judge by the weather, the current conditions and what protection you can provide whether it’s time for you to sow or not. Seeds will rot in freezing or waterlogged conditions outside – try starting crops off in modules in a cold greenhouse, cold frame or propagator, then harden off to be planted out. IF IN DOUBT, PUT IT OFF!
Plant new roses
This is the best month for planting roses in heavy soils or in cold areas. Don’t plant a rose where one was grown before, otherwise, new introductions may suffer from replant disease. Feed plants with a granular rose fertiliser as they come into growth. Prune established bush and standard roses as they start growing but before any leaves unfurl.
Sow veg seeds
Sow seeds in modules/pots in an unheated greenhouse: broad beans, leeks, lettuce, rocket, coriander, peas and Swiss chard. Sow sweet peppers, chillies, tomatoes, cucumbers, aubergines, celery and globe artichokes in a propagator.
Beware of slugs and snails
Add copper rings to pots and in borders to protect plants from slugs and snails.
Watch out for greenfly
Aphids can multiply rapidly during mild spells. Protect sweet pea plants in particular, as they can get sweet pea viruses, which are transmitted by the sapsuckers.