The average last frost for eastern Sussex County is April 11th.
Start that mower and get on the lawn. It is best for the lawn to not cut grass below 3 inches tall. It is also better not to bag grass clippings. Leaving the clippings on the lawn saves work, adds organic matter and nitrogen to your soil, and does not contribute to thatch build-up.
Apply weed killer to the lawn if necessary.
Start seeds for fast-growing vegetable plants like cucumbers and melons.
It is time to cut back perennials, clean up and edge landscape beds, apply weed preventer, and mulch if you have not already.
This is a great time to plant trees, shrubs, and perennials!
Harden off any plants you grew from seed by gradually acclimating them to outdoor conditions.
Plant your spring/summer annuals, herbs, and warm season vegetables outside once nighttime low temperatures are staying in the mid 50s. This usually occurs the last week of April. Planting before this can result in stunted growth, stess and disease, reduced yield, or death of the plants. Garden Shack Farm will deliver most pre-ordered annual flowers, herbs, and vegetable plants the end of April.
Keep some cold protection such as paper bags, buckets, or blankets handy. Keep an eye on the nighttime low temperatures and cover tender plants if it goes below 45 degrees.
Pinch the blooms from flower and vegetable transplants before planting. This helps direct the plant’s energy to developing roots, resulting in more productive plants. Gently loosen the roots of transplants before planting to help the plant establish itself.
Spotted lanternfly eggs may start hatching in late April. See what they look like here.
April is often the worst time for ticks. The nymphs (which are less than 2 mm) are nearly impossible to see and they begin feeding in spring. Take necessary precautions when outside.
Hummingbirds typically return to Delaware in mid-April so if you don’t have many flowers yet, be sure to put out a feeder for them! Here is a recipe for their food.