April is the start of flowering plants being available in abundance. The weather should be warming up and most summer perennials should be emerging by now.
April Flowering Trees:
So many trees in springtime are smothered in masses of blossom that it is difficult to pinpoint one outstanding favourite. However, the Acer family is difficult to beat, not so much because of its flowers but more for the fantastic varieties of leaf colour which look spectacular in autumn.
Acer palmatum (Japanese maple) is festooned with tiny red-purple flowers which are followed by winged fruits. The deciduous foliage of this small tree turns from mid-green to spectacular hues of red, orange and yellow in autumn before falling. The delicate leaves are prone to scorching from the sun so a partially shady spot is ideal.
Amelanchier lamarckii (June berry) produces small white, star-shaped flowers in March and April. It is followed by berries in June. Its mid-green leaves also turn to lovely red-bronze in the autumn before falling.
April Flowering Shrubs:
The flowers of Chaenomeles x superba (ornamental quinces) burst into colour smothering bear twigs and providing a welcome distraction in the spring garden. ‘Crimson and Gold’ has red flowers with gold centres from March to May followed by yellow-green fruit. This fully hardy variety is a popular choice for limited space, growing to only 1m high and with a spread of around 2m.
Tree peony is an eye-catching shrub when in flower. Paeonia rockii (Tree peony) has large, white flowers, sometimes flushed with pink and with a purple stain at the base of its petals. Its height and width of 2 x 2m makes it compact enough for the smallest of gardens.
April Flowering Climber:
Akebia quinata (Chocolate Vine) is a pretty climber with bright green three-lobed leaves which have a purple tinge in winter. The maroon flowers have a spicy fragrance, and in a particularly warm summer large fruit can form. It can reach heights of up to 10m. You may also be interested in Evergreen Climbing Plants to Cover Walls, Fences or Eyesores for more climbing plant ideas.
Nothing can beat tulips for their array of colours – from white through to black with every conceivable hue in between. Their emergence is definitely the start of summer and they look equally as splendid whether planted in the garden or in pots. So many different looks are achievable with tulips – it really is down to your own imagination. Drifts of subtly different colours can look equally as striking as clashing colours. Try mixing lime green with orange and purple for a fresh spring look.
For fragrance, nothing much comes close to hyacinth. Although the plants are quite small they exude a very strong fragrance and planting them along pathways or in pots in a doorway will ensure you, and your visitors, will get the most from these April flowers.