The Best Vegetables to Grow in April
April is filled with days of sunshine and showers, and it is the month that really kicks off life in the garden. April is the best time to plant most of your vegetable seeds after your last frost.
This month is a busy time in the veg garden, as lots of seeds can be sown this month. Now that the days are longer and warmer, We have a great variety of recommendations for seeds to plant in April. Vegetable season really takes off this month. Although be warned as frosts are still likely to make an appearance. Before planting seeds, it is a good idea to check the weather forecast for frost.
When sowing seeds directly outdoors, it can be difficult to keep the seedlings happy as they may have to compete with surrounding weeds. It is a good idea to clearly mark the areas where you plant your seeds to help you to identify the exact location of where you sowed the seeds.
Here are some of the best summer vegetables to grow in April and some advice on their care.
You can sow outdoors in late April or May, after the last frost. It’s best to plant seeds in pots – one bean per small pot, 5cm (2in) deep. Place the pots in a cold frame or sheltered position. Once the plants reach 8cm (3in) tall, plant them into their final positions.
You can sow beans in the garden in May or June when the soil has warmed to at least 60°F (16°C). Start beans indoors 3 to 2 weeks before transplanting them to the garden.
February and March are the perfect months to start sowing your chili pepper seeds indoors. Although you can still sow the seeds right up until the end of April, early sowing gives your chilies plenty of time to ripen before the end of summer. The hottest varieties need the longest growing period—chilies like a warm, sunny spot, well-drained soil, and regular watering during dry weather. If you don’t have a garden or balcony, you can grow chili plants all year round indoors.
Plants sown early in April could be ready to harvest from as early as June, depending on weather and growing conditions. Still, late July and August provide the best picking opportunities. Once the plants are well established, you shouldn’t need to water them more than once a week, taking care not to wet the plant itself. Aim to harvest several times a week through the season to prevent developing fruits from growing too large.
Radish seeds can be planted in both the spring and the fall, but growth should be suspended in the height of summer when temperatures are typically too hot. (Hot temperatures may cause radishes to bolt, making them essentially useless.) Otherwise, radishes are one of the easiest vegetables to grow in April.
Plant onions as soon as the ground can be worked in the spring, usually March or April. Make sure overnight temperatures aren’t forecast to drop below 20°F. Plant the bulbs about an inch deep and four inches apart. … Do not put the soil back around the onions; the bulb needs to emerge above the soil.
Carrot seeds can be sown from early spring to late August and can be harvested almost all year round. Most varieties are sown outdoors between April and July. Early cultivars such as the ‘Nantes 2’ can be planted under a cloche or started in greenhouses from February.
April is the best time to plant most of your vegetable seeds after your last frost for all zones. This means planting in February, March, or April in most parts of the United States and Canada. They can even be grown as a fall or winter crop in warm areas of the U.S. For an early harvest, plant peas in April and May for harvest in July and Aug. Green beans grow as either bushes or vines, depending on the variety. Still, either type requires temperatures between 50 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit to thrive.
Start tomatoes indoors in seed-starting trays or recyclable pots six to eight weeks before the last frost date. In the U.S. Department of Agriculture, plant hardiness zones 8 and 9 start seeds as early as mid-January; in USDA zones 3 or 4, wait to start seeds until mid-to-late March and early April.
If you prefer to plant by the calendar, we usually reach the desirable soil temperatures in late April. Optimal tomato-planting is anytime from late April through May, and plants set out in June will still have time to give good yields.
Most enthusiast gardeners agree that the best time to plant pumpkins is by the mid of April. It is ideal to start planting, particularly if you want to grow large pumpkin varieties just in time for Halloween. If you live in northern locations, start planting in late May.
Cucumbers are warm-season crops that don’t tolerate frost. In mild climates with long growing seasons, plant them outdoors between April and June. In hot climates, plant cucumbers as early as February or March through July. Plant only after soil and air temperatures are predictably above 65 degrees Fahrenheit.
For a spring crop, plant beets as soon as the soil dries out, and you can work it, typically from March to mid-May. Where the weather remains cold and wet into spring, wait until April. Being a root crop, it does best if the soil is free of large stones and prefers light to fairly heavy soil. It’s an attractive crop and perfect for an ornamental kitchen garden.
A hardy biennial, parsnips are usually grown as an annual root crop. They look similar to carrots, and only they’re usually a shade of white. Parsnip seeds should be direct sown outdoors from April to June once the ground is workable. They need temperatures of around 12C (52F), so don’t plant them too much earlier than this unless you use cloches to warm the soil first. Parsnips can be started indoors, but they—like most root crops—are difficult to transplant to the garden with success.
Leeks are available nearly all-year-round, starting in late June and ending late April or early May, depending on the weather and development of bolting, with peaks in autumn and spring. Plant leeks during the cool climate of early spring and fall. They grow well in raised beds, containers, and in-ground gardens. Sow seeds outdoors from late March to late April. The leeks are either sown in containers or the open ground. Around June time, they are transplanted to their final positions in open ground.
Runner beans can be sown indoors or undercover from April or May. This applies if you live in a cold area or want an early harvest. Alternatively, they can be sown directly outdoors from June, when the soil has warmed up to an average of 12 degrees Celsius, and there is no longer a risk of frost.
Planting summer squash in late April will lead to fresh, tasty squash in the summer. Most summer squashes require 50 to 65 frost-free days to mature. That means you can safely plant squash in the last week or two of spring. Squash plants need full sun to produce. Make sure you’re planting your seeds or starting in an area with at least 6 hours of sunlight per day.