As June blows itself out we again hope and pray for settled weather during July. The early growing season was wet and cold, so has been very challenging for many crops.
Here are the top ten gardening jobs for July according to the RHS:
- Hoe borders regularly to keep down weeds
- Be water-wise, especially in drought-affected areas
- Pinch out sideshoots on tomatoes
- Harvest lettuce, radish, other salads and early potatoes
- Position summer hanging baskets and containers outside
- Cut lawns at least once a week
- Plant out summer bedding
- Stake tall or floppy plants
- Prune many spring-flowering shrubs
- Shade greenhouses to keep them cool and prevent scorch
With many fruits and vegetables ready to harvest this month it’s worth keeping an extra eye out for pests which could steal your crops away from you. Pigeons and other birds can be kept from crops with netting or crop cages. Slugs have thrived in the wet weather and a sprinkling of slug pellets will keep them at bay. We have environmentally friendly slug pellets which can be found in the Greener Gardening section of our Garden Shop.
Now is also a good time to plant up empty beds and borders, and to fill in any gaps. Following some of the worst spring weather that anyone can remember, 2012 is the year to see summer as the new spring for gardeners according to Horticultural Trades Association’s (HTA) Director of Business Development, Tim Briercliffe. But as the weather starts to take a turn for the better, the HTA would like to reassure gardeners that they still have time to plant to achieve the perfect summer garden. With the promise of improved weather in July, we are seeing the emergence of a late spring, the perfect weather to kick start the gardening season. What’s more we have lots of offers in-store on garden plants, including lupins, lavender and lillies which will provide your garden with instant colour.
Be patient with your vegetable patch, with the warmer days we’ve had recently hopefully crops like beans and courgettes will finally get going and provide you with a bounty in July and August. If you have any gaps you could fill them with flowers for cutting, which are looking fantastic at the moment and will provide you will fresh flowers for your home all summer long.