Our top 5 summer gardening tipsBlog /
June 27, 2018 3:03 pm
It’s July and the garden is in full swing but it’s important to still maintain your outside area to keep it looking at its best. Here are our top five tips for the summer months:
1. Hoe borders regularly to keep down weeds.
Hoeing regularly is an important part of managing your borders, preventing weeds as well as getting rid of them. The best time to hoe is when the soil is dry – this results in what seasoned gardeners call ‘dust mulch’ which can make it harder for new weeds to germinate. Tip: Hoe in the morning before you water the garden.
2. Position summer hanging baskets and containers outside and plant out summer bedding
Hanging baskets can be positioned almost anywhere and look glorious with extravagant cascades of flowers. Choose plants depending on where you are planning to position the hanging baskets. Some plants, such as portulaca and garden verbena prefer to be in the full sun, while others, such as New Guinea Impatiens (‘Busy Lizzies’) and lobelia do well in the shade or partial sunlight.
July is also a good time to plant out summer bedding. Water plants first and then gently work them free from their containers using a pencil to poke the soil upwards via the hole at the bottom. Plant out in well weeded and well-watered soil in holes that are approximately the same depth as the original container. Tip: When purchasing summer bedding, look for garden plants that are healthy with plenty of buds rather than open blooms.
3. Stake tall or floppy plants
This is pretty self-explanatory but you should stake tall or floppy plants to prevent them from falling over in windy or wet weather. The secret to successful staking is to do it early in the season before the plant has grown too big to manage. A pyramid of bamboo stakes secured with twine is ideal for staking plants such as sunflowers, hollyhocks and Canterbury bells. You can buy a range of metal plant supports, such as grow-through supports, curved linking stakes, and single stem supports for a whole host of plants and shrubs.
4. Prune many spring-flowering shrubs
Pruning is good for many plants as it encourages new growth and keeps them maintained. Now is a good time to cut back any spring-flowering shrubs, such as forsythia, lilac, and magnolia and azaleas as new buds are formed during summer growth. The best way to prune is with a good quality pair of hand pruning clippers, although you may need a saw or loppers if the shrub is very tall and woody.
5. Shade greenhouses to keep them cool and prevent scorch
If your greenhouse is positioned in the sun, a simple solution is to purchase some shade cloth and place it on your greenhouse to protect plants from being scorched by the hot summer sun. A coat of cool glass is another inexpensive way of providing shade.