What a beautiful July we’ve had, we hope last month’s top tips helped you to keep your gardens looking lovely! There’s always plenty to do in the garden at this time of year, here’s Andrew’s top tips to get you started:
- Patio and basket plants should be nearing their peak during August. Don’t forget to keep them well fed with either a liquid fertiliser, or a granular fertiliser, both of which are available in the garden centre here at Singletons. Keep the plants dead headed to keep them looking fresh.
- Perennials that have finished flowering and are not looking their best, can now be trimmed or pruned down. Firstly to tidy the borders up, and trimming them, encourages lots of fresh growth and maybe a fresh crop of flowers.
- Hedges can be trimmed about now, to get them back into shape before winter. Trim the long whippy shoots off and add them to the compost heap. Keep an eye out for nesting birds though. Spring is the usual time for nesting, but there maybe a few late nesting birds, so just have a quick check before trimming the hedge.
- Lavender can usually be trimmed back after flowering. Young plants can be trimmed back by about a third. This will help shape the plants for next year. Older plants which are tall and leggy, can be cut back but don’t cut back into old wood. These will not produce anymore shoots. Older plants that have been in the ground for over 5 years, may need replacing with younger plants.
- Start planning for next years flowers in your borders. Some of our Shrubs and Perennials here on the nursery will benefit from being planted this time of year, so they can establish themselves before winter. Some annuals and Biennials ca be planted about now, so they can overwinter and be ready for next year.
Fruit and veg
- Tomatoes should still be producing for you, don’t forget though, as you water. You wash out valuable feed from the compost which would have been available to the plants. Keep feeding every other watering with a tomato feed, such as Tomorite or Maxicrop. Aim to keep about 5 or 6 trusses per plants, as the plants grow, keep taking off the lower leaves to ripen the fruit.
- If you have Peppers, Aubergines or Cucumbers, keep feeding them every other watering with a high Potash feed. The high Potash feed will help to form flowers and fruits, and will help keep the plants nice and healthy as they fruit.
- Potatoes. These should be nearly ready now, depending on what variety you have planted. Either second earlies or Maincrops should be nearly ready to harvest. You can tell they are ready when they have flowered and the stems are starting to turn yellow. Second earlies are perfect for salads, Maincrops will store well over winter.
- Keep sowing salad crops, so you have fresh salads over the end of the summer. Keep sowing small batches of seed such as Lettuce, Radish, salad leaves etc. Either sow straight into freshly prepared beds, or straight into pots.
- Strawberries have now finished flowering and hopefully you have enjoyed the fruits of your labours. You will now see the plants are starting to produce runners. These can be pegged down into smaller pots, or trays to root. Don’t detach from the main plant just yet, until they have formed enough roots to grow away happily themselves. Once rooted, they can be left in pots to overwinter and planted out in spring. These will be your main fruit bearing plants for next year, where hopefully you will enjoy more strawberries.