When the sun is shining during April, I am unsure if there is a better time in the garden. So full of excitement and hope. But April showers are a real thing! It could be sunny one day and freezing cold the next so hold on before planting out. Plants will soon catch up when planted outside after the last frosts have passed. If you can’t wait, make sure you have plenty of protection on hand. Cloches, grow tunnels and plastic bottles cut in half and placed over small plants can be helpful.
There are many plants which can be sown in April but one of my favourites to grow is Beetroot. Homegrown pickled beetroot is delicious and beetroot chocolate cake is perfect for a summer garden party.
Another reason why I love them, is they are pretty easy to grow! Sowing them is easy, just pop them in the soil where they will grow and cover over lightly. Ideally in full sun and well drained soil. They do tolerate a little shade but grow best in sun. Each ‘seed’ is actually a cluster of a few seeds in one, so thinning out is necessary. The baby shoots are entirely edible and great to add into salads. They can be grown in pots as well or you can sown them in modules or seed trays and transplant, however they aren’t too keen on being disturbed so go easy.
There are many varieties from rainbow beetroot to chioggia beetroot, bolthardy, pablo and albinia to name a few. They can even be grown in amongst flower beds because the foliage itself is pretty and tastes great especially when young.
To read more about Ellen Mary, you can find her on social media and on her website - https://www.ellenmarygardening.co.uk/