I hope the soil is warming up where you are, as we finally get some consistent sunshine. It’s certainly been a long winter and many of us may still get caught out by nasty late frosts, especially after cloudless days. If you have potatoes in the ground or in bags on a patio, then you may have already seen the leaves of those brave plants ‘burnt’ by frost and looking black and sad. It shouldn’t be a disaster – it’ll set them back a few weeks but new growth will appear. Wait and see.
In any case, draw earth up around the plant’s stems and semi-bury them. This always seems a bit violent and destructive but serves good purposes; each buried leaf stem will become a stem that grows a spud instead. It also protects leaves from any further frost damage and helps make sure no spuds will later be exposed to daylight as they grow and swell underground. Daylight turns spuds green and, to a degree, poisonous. Plan to earth up a few more times this month before letting the plants grow on.
If you have grown tomatoes from seed, now is the time to start tentatively letting them go outside during the day – but bring them back inside at night. As the month progresses you can begin to leave them outside at night too, as this process gradually ‘hardens off’ the plants ready to go in their permanent beds later. If you haven’t got any plants from seed, then get some from the garden centre but if they were inside when you bought them, apply the same rules. Putting them straight into your plot could result in them keeling over dead in days.