SAFE TO SOW JUST about this time it is usually safe to sow most hardy vegetables for the first crops. Mid-April is early enough for most Brassicas, simply because of their season of growth, but it is safe enough for Brussels sprouts now, and it is also a good plan to make a first sowing of some quick cabbage like Prime' or Velocity on the very spot where the plants to expected to mature. 'they arc simply thinned out in the row and not transplanted. Treated in this way they will he ready as soon as the latest of the autumn-planted cabbages, while as many of the thinnings as you require can be set out elsewhere like any other seedlings. But the amateur gardener comes into his own with peas. These can be sown with confidence. The time has gone past for Meteor and the very hardiest sorts; we can now proceed with Peter Pan and Gradus, two marrowfats of exceptional yield and quality. The former is dwarf and is very good for cloche work. The soil should have been well manured in winter, and after sowing the seed (preferably rinsed in paraffin to deter mice and birds). the surface of the soil should be dusted with lime or soot. Lime and soot and manure should never he mixed together at one time.
Parsnips and shorthorn carrots (including Early Market-a splendid kind) may now be sown; but the soil must be very friable and fairly warm, otherwise the seed will rot. Onions too are better sown in March, although Northern gardeners often prefer to plant out frame-raised seedlings next month. Leeks should certainly he sown, and sown thinly, so that they can make good growth before the time comes to plant them out. On soils too cool or moist for carrots and parsnips, turnips and swedes can take their place now.