General tasks and garden maintenance:
Along with the flourish of colour this month, weeds are thriving to. If you hoe on warm days and leave them on the surface they will wither and die in the sun.
Deadhead spent flowers from containers, pots, hanging baskets, beds and borders. Feed the containers occasionally with a liquid feed.
There may still be the threat of a late frost, so keep vulnerable plants and new shoots protected at night if frost is forecast.
If you have any really tender plants don’t put them out until the middle of the month, unless the weather changes dramatically.
Water Recycling – Consider using kitchen and bath water (as long as it is neither too dirty, greasy nor full of detergent) for watering.
Watering your garden. Once the weather is drier and warmer, water thoroughly once or twice a week rather than little and often
Containers and hanging baskets need watering every day and sometimes even twice a day if it is hot and windy.
Large shrubs or trees, leave a hose trickling around the base for an hour.
Hedges are best watered with a trickle hose (a length of old hose punctured with little holes) left running for an hour or so.
Whether it be a shrub, tree, perennial or bedding plant, water in well. Beforehand, soak the rootball in a bucket until no air bubbles come to the surface, dig the planting hole, fill with water and allow to drain away. Place the plant in the hole, fill with soil, firm gently and water with a watering can.
Keep an eye out for snails and pick them off.
Slugs and snails love the young shoots of delphiniums and the like, so use pet-friendly slug pellets.
Caterpillar and aphid infestations can be dealt with by hand if caught early enough, but you can use insecticides.
Remember to keep putting out bird food.
Ensure trees or shrubs planted in the last couple of years on lawns or in areas of rough grass have a circle of clear earth around them – this must be kept clear or grass will prevent essential moisture getting through. Mulching with bark or compost will help.
Trim evergreen hedges such as privet and lonicera and clip box.
To ward off black spot and mildew spray roses with a fungicide. Do this in the evening to avoid harming bees.
Tie in climbing and rambling roses horizontally – this encourages more flower production as fewer side-shoots are produced due to restricted sap flow.