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Hints and Tips

Hints and Tips

January Hints & Tips

  • Recycle your Christmas tree by shredding it for mulch
  • Ventilate the greenhouse on sunny days
  • Dig over any vacant plots that have not been dug already
  • Repair and re-shape lawn edges Inspect stored tubers of Dahlia, Begonia and Canna for rots or drying out
  • Prune apple and pear trees Start forcing rhubarb Plan your vegetable crop rotations for the coming season
  • Remember to keep putting out food and water for hungry birds. Hard, dry ground makes food scarce and hard to find for the birds.
  • Ensure protective straw or fleece is still in place on tender plants overwintering outdoors.
  • In mild areas, and during dry spells, you can still lift and divide herbaceous perennials.
  • This will increase stocks, and revive tired or poorly flowering clumps.
  • Raise patio containers onto feet or bricks, if you have not done so already, to avoid them sitting in the wet.

November in The Garden

  • As the cold weather begins to set in it is important to ensure that tender or young plants are well protected from frosts and cold winds. Do this by insulating with frost protection of bubble wrap
  • Insulate your glasshouse if using it throughout the winter or think about installing a glasshouse heater
  • You can now begin to lift and divide dahlia bulbs as they are dormat, aswel as rhubarb plants
  • Plant amaryllis bulbs if you intend to have them in flower for Christmas
  • Keep an eye on your bird feeders and bird tables that they are kept clean and well stocked, birds will be ever more desperate for food now
  • Bare root season is arriving so now is a good time to plant that new hedge you have been talking about. Most garden centres will have their first deliveries of bare root hedging in the second week of this month

Tips for September

Spring bulbs

September is the perfect time to start planting spring bulbs. Daffodils, tulips and crocus bulbs are available from September onwards. Indoor hyacinth bulbs should also be planted now to ensure that they are ready for Christmas

Lawn Care

Mow, rake and mow again. Aerate ,with a machine if you can. Mend broken edges and reseed bald patches. Dose with low-nitrogen feed, then top-dress.

Septemer is also the last chance to give your hedges a nice trim, while early-summer flowering perennials can also be divided up now if desired

Fruit and Vegetables

Continue to harvest maincrop potatoes, sweet potatoes and sweetcorn plants and consider planting cabbages, lettuces and onions for over wintering around this time. Fruit trees should now be bearing their fruits and you should begin picking as soon as the first fruits begin to fall from their trees

Misc

  • You should consider placing a net over the top of your pond before the trees begin to shed their leaves
  • Clean out cold frames and greenhouses so that they are ready for use in the Autumn

 

Tips for August

August is a month where we should enjoy our garden, kick back on the patio admiring the now lush containers and pots we had previously planted. There is of course always something to do in the garden and August is no different. Some of these jobs include:

  • Plant Winter vegetable and salad plants to ensure a crop up to Christmas
  • Continue to deadhead bedding plants and other annuals to prolong their flowering period that little bit further.
  • Harvest vegetables fruit and vegetables 
  • Continue to water all plants as needed, August can be a quite dry month and hopefully we may eventually see some sun this month
  • Lift and dry onions and prepare for storage over Winter months
  • Continue to mow lawns as normal in preparation for final cuts in September
  • Get ready for planting spring bulbs. Bulbs should be in stock in most garden centres by mid August
  • Dont forget the birds, make sure there is plenty water and food left out for them
  • Trim hedges as required, they tend to grow quite quickly and vigorously in August

Tips for July

July is often one of the hottest months of the year and a great time to sit out, relax and enjoy your garden but you’ll want to keep your plants looking great. Regularly dead-heading will give a longer display of blooms, make sure you keep them well watered, using rain or grey water where possible, and a good soluble plant food every 7-10days

Hoe off small annual weeds which thrive in the sun but will desiccate quickly in the heat.

Use leftover tea and coffee grounds to acidify the soil of acid-loving plants such as azaleas, rhododendrons, camellias, gardenias and even blueberries. A light sprinkling of about one-quarter of an inch applied once a month will keep the pH of the soil on the acidic side.

July is also a good time for a chance to clean the patio and treat outside woodwork like decking or fencing

If you didn’t get a chance earlier you can use this as a rainy day art project for the school break. For artistic plant name markers use flat stones and gloss paint to decorate with the names and butterflies or flowers or paint your own garden bugs

Tips for June

Veggie patch

  • Hoe vegetable beds regularly to keep weeds from becoming a problem. Begin to harvest early potatoes and continue picking salad crops

Fruit garden

  • The first strawberries are now cropping, that must surely be one of the highlights of summer in the fruit garden. Keep all fruit well watered especially during dry spells; mulching with organic matter will help reduce water loss and keep down the weeds too; remember to surround the strawberry plants with straw or matting - this keeps the fruit off the soil and helps prevent soil splash which can spread disease.
  • A bit of forward thinking; protect your crops of fruit – currant, gooseberries, blueberries and raspberries with netting; birds love developing fruit buds and your entire crop can disappear virtually overnight.

Flower garden

  • Stake perennials before they become too tall or floppy this ensures the display continues for longer and the flowers are not damaged on the ground

Lawns

  • The more you let nature do the work for you, the easier it will be to care for your lawn.
  • To keep a healthy lawn, mow at least once a week and never cut more than one-third from the total grass height. Mow the lawn when the grass is dry and keep the blades sharp to reduce tearing. Leave clippings on the lawn to filter down to the soil and recycle nutrients back to the roots. The shorter the clippings, the more quickly they will decompose into the soil. If you are considering purchasing a new mower check out ‘mulching mowers’ that recycle clippings back onto the lawn.
Kids Stuff
  • Crafty ideas for recycled cans; just a lick of paint and some bright summer flowers or add cheeky faces, plant with summer bedding and add a paper drinks umbrella

     

Tips for May

Gardening Tips and Advice for May

  • Protect tender plants from late frosts

  • Hoe small weeds regularly to stop it being a major task later

  • Look at putting in some rainwater collection butts, good for the garden, good for the environment and good for reducing water bills

  • To create perfectly natural markers, write the names of plants (using a permanent marker) on the flat faces of stones of various sizes and place them at or near the base of your plants.

  • Use chamomile tea to control damping-off fungus, which often attacks young seedlings quite suddenly. Just add a spot of tea to the soil around the base of seedlings once a week or use it as a foliar spray.

  • If you want to encourage more wildlife into your garden, planting wildflowers will support the local biodiversity; such as Cornflower - Corn chamomile - Corn marigold - Field poppy - Field mallow

  • Start mowing your grass weekly; remember not to cut too low, it will only encourage moss

  • A good mulch can still be applied to perennial borders and some balanced fertiliser whilst you’re there

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