My, My Is It Actually July?
Time To Relax And Gaze At The Sky

There were times when I thought we may never see the sun this year but thankfully we have had a warm spell. At this time of year I spend most of my time in the garden weeding, watering, cutting the grass, removing faded flowers and cutting back straggly plants. I try to be organised and plan what needs my attention but I find a gentle stroll around the garden with a cup of tea for about 15 to 20 minutes allows me to prioritise what I need to do. Almost always I see something that I hadn’t expected to do but is now a priority, for example flower stems that have fallen over, and either need to be staked or removed, munch marks in leaves are another one, searching out the culprit and taking the appropriate action. 

I also have a rule that I will do the jobs I dislike most first leaving the ones I enjoy towards the end of the day, this means that you finish with a smile and hopefully look forward to your next foray into the garden.

Herbaceous perennials are great for filling the middle planting layer in your borders bridging the gap between trees/shrubs and the lower growing front of border plants. The down side is that generally they need a little more attention, as most of them die down in late autumn and re appear the following spring, new shoots vulnerable to foraging molluscs (slugs and snails), need protection, as the plant develops it may need some kind of support, canes, stakes or one of the many wire framed structures. A general purpose feed as they grow will help them develop strong stems and flower better. The early flowering perennials such as delphiniums and lupins are not that pretty when the flowers have finished so it is best to remove the flowering stem completely along with damaged or eaten leaves. Once completed I give each plant a liquid feed with tomato food, (any other liquid feed you have will be fine too) so effectively I am giving them a water and a feed at the same time. The border can look a little drab foe a few days until other plants start to flower, so what I do is plant a few containers with annuals or tender perennials that compliment the colour and texture of neighbouring plants, carefully move away the foliage of plants that have finished and place a couple of house bricks on the soil placing the planted container on top. The foliage of the plants you tidied up will grow back and provide a foil for the container whilst building up the plant for next year. You will occasionally find that they will flower a second time too. Don’t forget to water and feed your containers throughout the summer.

Hedge-cutting time is upon us and it’s time to trim them into their intended shape which also encourages them to thicken up too. If you don’t cut your hedge they will develop into the plant they are which in many cases are trees, beech, yew and silver birch are naturally woodland trees, but they make excellent hedges providing habitat for insects and nesting birds, your own little wildlife sanctuary, unlike a fence that doesn’t really support anything apart from woodworm and some fungi. If you have a compost heap the clippings can be added and are great for maintaining a balance of coarse material and grass clippings which if left on their own can become slimy and smelly. It’s a good idea to check out the health of your hedge too, are there any dead stems? If so cut them out too, if they are dead they won’t grow back. I like to feed our hedges after trimming and use a general pelleted fertiliser such as chicken pellets, and if it is dry I water them in. Your hedge is just like any other plant and needs help to maintain its health and keep growing.

With the memories of our spring bulb displays still in our minds its a good idea to jot down what worked well and more importantly what combinations you liked. Bulb companies are sending out their catalogues and starting to advertise what bulbs they will be offering this year. Although they won’t be delivered until late summer/early autumn if there are ones you particularly want that its a good idea to get your order in early. If on the other hand you prefer a bargain and are happy to take what is available the you can leave your order until the sale offers come along usually around late August/September.

Happy gardening,


Next month,  tidy up your herb plants, pep up your roses and keep your plants hydrated

You May Also Like

New Research Study Launched In Harrogate District To Help Improve The Health Of Local Children And Families
Award-Winning Outdoor Live Theatre Event Returns This Summer


Must Read

No results found.