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April—Promise of Spring

April comes from the Latin word aperio, meaning “to open or bud,” because plants begin to grow this month.

Weather in the Northern Hemisphere can be capricious—an optimist’s dream and a poet’s inspiration. See your free long-term weather forecasts for April and May now!

Naturalist Hal Borland wrote, “April is a promise that May is bound to keep.” With that in mind, plant shade trees now to please posterity and fruit trees, lilac bushes, and roses to please yourself.

April Gardening Tips

• Begin your garden work when a lump of soil squeezed in your hand is dry enough to fall apart slowly. See when your soil is ready.

• Plant vegetables such as peas, spinach, lettuce, beets, and cabbage when the soil is ready. See our Vegetable pages.

• Repot your houseplants as the days lengthen so that they will grow well during the spring and summer months.

• Add some manure to your thawing compost pile and turn it frequently.

• If you plant your Easter lily outdoors after the danger of frost has passed, you may coax another season’s bloom.

For more April gardening jobs, click here.

See our main Gardening page for more tips, articles, charts, and resources.

Also, enjoy our blogs—about everything from planting an organic garden to root cellars!


April is here!
Blithest season of all the year;
The little brook laughs as it leaps away;
The lambs are out on the hills at play.

–Eben E. Rexford (1848–1916)

Photo Contest Winners!

Thank you to ALL who shared photos celebrating the winter season!

Credit: Bert’s Buck-Up Ranch

See the winning photos—and vote for the “Readers’ Choice” award!

Great Almanac Giveaway

Check out this month’s prize:

4 polo shirts—visit to see available styles, colors, and sizes

Calendar Clearance Sale—Save 50%!

Plus, Free Shipping on all U.S. orders of $30 and more!

All of our 2010 calendars are half-price, including our four wall calendars, our fun page-per-day Every Day calendar, and our hardbound week-at-a-glance Engagement Calendar.

You can still enjoy Almanac wit and wisdom through spring, summer, fall, and the holidays!

2010 Recipe Calendar Only $4.49
2010 Country Calendar Only $4.99
2010 Gardening Calendar Only $4.49
2010 Weather Watcher’s Calendar Only $4.49
2010 Every Day Calendar Only $5.99
2010 Engagement Calendar Only $7.49

See more details and purchase.

Springtime Recipes
One of our favorite harbingers of spring is asparagus. This vegetable used to be the first sign that the reign of winter and its root vegetables was over. Also, look for fresh fiddlehead ferns and other spring greens in your local supermarket.

Here are a few recipes to try:

Spring Risotto with fresh asparagus and scallops.

Quick Spring Pasta with asparagus and fresh mushrooms.

Spring Fiddleheads with garlic, shallots, and lemon juice.

See more April recipes, gardening tips, and folklore of the season!

A cold and moist April fills the cellar and fattens the cow.