Spring is in the air and it’s time to unpack the gloves and get gardening! This quarter it’s all about sowing our favourite vegetables, because now is the perfect time to put seeds in the ground and watch them grow into vigorous plants. So put down the remote, grab a shovel and some seeds, because it’s time for a healthy gardening season!
April does what it wants! Although April can surprise us with many hours of sunshine, we should always be prepared for the odd sleet shower.
It is important to wait until the risk of frost and night frosts has passed before starting delicate outdoor vegetables. In the meantime, windowsills, cold frames, and greenhouses are all good places to start.
- Variant 1: Sowing in a pot or under glass.
Plants: Pumpkins, asparagus, basil, and tomatoes & cucumbers – it’s high time to give them enough time to germinate.
Place: Windowsill, Cold frame, or Greenhouse
Tips: Grow pots can also be easily made from toilet paper rolls and newspaper. Wrap the newspaper tightly around the toilet roll, fold the excess paper inwards, and press the bottom firmly –> pull out the toilet roll, and voilà!
- Option 2: Garden & balcony sowing:
Plants: Cold hardy varieties such as parsley and spinach, cauliflower, fennel, potatoes, radishes, red & white cabbage, courgettes & mangetout & almost all types of lettuce.
Tip: Flowering plants to attract bees and other beneficial insects can now be sown or planted directly into the beds.
If you have sown in the first few months of the year, you can harvest your first radishes, spinach, or asparagus by the end of April.
May & June
May and June are when things get really interesting. Temperatures rise and there is blossom and green everywhere. This is the ideal time to sow most of the vegetables that will provide a bountiful harvest in a few weeks’ time. Finally, everything can be sown directly outside (which means our windowsills can be used for something other than planting seedlings).
Those of you who have already started seedlings can hardly wait to plant them in the garden. To ensure that your carefully nurtured plants are not damaged by night-time temperature fluctuations, it is advisable to follow an old country rule and wait for the Ice Saints (in Austria from 11 to 15 May 2023).
Plants: Runner beans, broccoli, tomatoes, beetroot, carrots, leeks, potatoes, and onions.
Position: Direct sowing in the bed or in containers.
Tips: DIY seed strips. Especially useful for small seeds or to ensure recommended spacing is maintained.
Materials: Seeds, flour, water, pencil & toilet paper, or kitchen roll.
- Cut the toilet paper to the required length
- Mark the number of ‘lanes’ you want
- Mark places for seeds according to the seed packet
- Mix flour & water to make glue (should be viscous)
- Drop the glue onto the marks & place the seeds on top, leave to dry & cut out the marked strips
Get ready for autumn: Sowing in a pot or under glass
There is no need for pre-sowing in June, but you can start preparing for autumn. Focus on delicate varieties that can be harvested in the autumn. These include broccoli, Chinese cabbage, iceberg lettuce, and kohlrabi.
The best thing about May and June, however, is that many of the vegetables planted up to then will be producing their first crops. Work smarter – eat smarter!
For those who need more information, here are our top garden videos:
Key spring gardening tasks
Planting tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers correctly
Raised vegetable beds: Are you making these mistakes?
Gardening in April | harvesting organic vegetables of the highest quality
Hardworking gardeners deserve a break. You can find green nature not only in your garden or on your balcony, but also in our extraordinary mountain hotels in Austria and South Tyrol.
PS: More to come with the Q3 sowing calendar.