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Over recent weeks we have been helping out cleaning out the ditches in Lower Common. We’ve also been busy helping out clients on house calls. Now that the sun is starting to shine people are beginning to concentrate on their gardens.
Top tips for August 2016
Who knows what weather we’ll get this August? Traditionally it was hot and dry but in recent years it has been much cooler and wet! Whatever we get thrown at us this year, make sure you enjoy your garden before we head into autumn. This is a month of abundance – of beautiful flowers, fabulous fruit and tasty veg – when you get to see the results of your hard work.
Keep an eye on your garden
If your bags are packed and you’re off on holiday make sure you’ve got someone or something in place to keep pots and hanging baskets watered – this might be a friendly neighbour or family who are willing to hold a hose, or an automatic water system. Container plants can quickly dry out and you don’t want to return home to pots full of dehydrated plants! And, remember, keep feeding them on a weekly basis with liquid tomato food so they keep blooming through to the early autumn.
As always there’s plenty to do in the garden. Wisteria and climbing and rambling roses can be pruned now. Cut back the whippy green shoots in Wisteria so they’re about five or six leaves in length and prune climbing and rambling roses that do not repeat flower. And while your tending to your roses, remove infected leaves that have blackspot or rust and put them in your dustbin, not the compost bin.
It’s boring but a necessary job – weeding. A little and often will keep the job in proportion rather than it becoming a momentous task. The easiest way to keep them under control in your beds and veggie patch is using a Dutch hoe, which cuts the weeds just below the surface. Don’t forget to do baskets and containers too. Not only do weeds look messy but they also steal valuable moisture in the soil. Give us a call if you would like a dumpy bag of mulch delivered – a good layer of mulch will help to keep weeds at bay in beds and borders.
Keep calm and garden on
In the kitchen garden, keep calm and keep on harvesting! Pick veg while it’s young and freeze or swap veg that you have an abundance of for those that you haven’t grown with other gardeners. Blackberries, raspberries, nectarines, apricots, and early apple and pears will all start to ripen now ready for picking. If they come off the plant or tree with an easy twist they’re ready for harvesting.
Things you can be getting on with this month…
- Deadhead summer bedding plants regularly to encourage them to keep flowering.
- Keep ponds, birdbaths and other water features topped up.
- Sow parsley, chives and mint for winter.
- Trim lavender and rosemary to remove the dead flowers.
- Now that fledglings have flown hedges can be cut. Give us a call if you need any help with this.
- Collect and store seeds from hardy annuals and perennials around your garden for sowing in the autumn.
- Don’t be concerned by bright green bugs that look heavily armoured. They are shieldbugs, which are completely harmless.
Enjoy the lazy summer evenings of August. There’s nothing better than chatting with friends and family around the chiminea or fire pit. If you need firewood just give us a call and we can deliver it to your door.