We’re slowly coming into the spring months after a long, cold winter, and now’s the time to start getting back into your gardens and preparing for the warmer weather. Even low-maintenance gardens require some care to keep them looking in great shape, so our gardener Joe has provided a basic (inexhaustive!) list of jobs to do over the next months to make sure you can enjoy your private paradise to its full extent.
- Keep weeds under control - Protect fruit blossom from late frosts - Tie in climbing and rambling roses - Sow hardy annuals, herbs and wildflower seed outdoors - Move evergreen trees and shrubs (make sure the spaces are not excessively over-watered) - Add mulch and farmyard manure to shrubs (use ericaceous for acid-loving plants) - Tie up all climbers such as honeysuckle and clematis - Remove faded daffodil and tulip flowers, nipping off the heads and seed pod at the same time - Deadhead pansies, primulas and other spring bedding plants (pansies in particular will carry on into the spring and even to early summer if attended to frequently) - Start planting early vegetables such as potatoes, onions and shallots - Scarify the lawn to remove surface thatch and encourage deeper roots and growth
- Plant out cannas and dahlias (be wary of late frosts) - Divide clumps of herbaceous perennials that you want to propagate - Apply a liquid fertiliser to spring bulbs after they have flowered, to encourage good flowering next year and to help prevent daffodil blindness (daffodil foliage appearing but not flowering) - Weed borders to prevent annual and perennial weeds from spreading and seeding themselves - This time of year is nesting season so always check for signs of activity before getting out the pruners. The Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 protects bird’s nests, so it is an offence to damage or destroy them. Hedgehogs can also be found hidden in the midst of hedges and under leaf piles so be very careful when strimming along hedgerows - Cut back tender shrubs and sub-shrubs such as fuchsia - Mow the lawn weekly - Plant main vegetables such as beetroot, cauliflower, carrots, turnips, courgettes, cabbages and broccoli
- Clip evergreen hedges such as privet and box - Prune flowering shrub such as weigela and Philadelphus - Plant out summer bedding and seed-raised plants (make sure to water well and at correct times) - Plant up tubs of summer bedding such as begonias, geraniums, petunia and cosmos - Cutting back clumps of spring-flowering perennials can encourage a fresh flush of foliage - Add grass clippings to the compost heap in thin layers - Move garden furniture and other objects regularly to allow grass to recover and prevent yellow patches - Water thoroughly morning or evening (or both) – never during the full heat of day. Keep to a routine and the plants will start to open up to absorb the water at correct times – during the day they can overheat
- In hot weather, set the mower at a slightly higher level than normal for early summer - Plant autumn-flowering bulbs such as autumn crocuses - Cutting back plants in baskets followed by feeding can encourage new growth and help revive tired displays - Prop up tall perennials such as lupins, delphiniums and gladioli if they have not been staked to prevent them falling over - Most perennial weeds are best dealt with in the summer when the weeds are in active growth. Digging out often works, but applying a weedkiller can be more practical, particularly for large areas - Ensure newly planted trees and shrubs do not dry out; they often need much more water than people imagine - Remove rose suckers and tree suckers
Enjoy the benefit of Joe’s years of experience by booking him now to complete one-off jobs or regular maintenance in your garden – call the office on 01797 223633.