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‘Flaming June’ approaches and suddenly we are half way through the year already!
Sadly we already have hosepipe bans in some parts of the country, caused we are told by last year’s heatwave with our reservoirs still below required levels.
Time to think of more water storage around the garden! Make sure you have cleaned out your existing water butts to ensure clean water for your plants
Let’s take a look at our garden task list for June!
Your grass should be growing well now.
As long as you have not used a lawn residual weed killer, you can deposit your clippings in layers on the compost heap.
Water in dry weather if you can, though in some areas there is already a hose-pipe ban.
Should you need to mow in these conditions, then raise the mower blades a little when cutting, so the grass is not put under stress.
Now’s the time to buy bedding plants in bud for planting up borders, hanging baskets, tubs etc.
Maybe you have grown plants yourself? If so, harden them off to outside conditions as there’s still time for a late frost in early June!
Annuals – early sowings should be through now and thriving!
Make sure you keep the young seedlings from direct sown seed, weed-free. Competition will limit your plants growth.
Forgotten to sow? There’s still time to sow flowers like alyssum, calendula and nasturtiums!
Sweet peas may well be in flower now. Make sure you cut flower sprays regularly to prolong flowering and long stem length.
Biennials and perennials – prepare yourself a ‘nursery’ seed bed to produce young plants for planting in their final places in the autumn.
Examples of biennials are wallflowers and delphinium for a perennial.
Established plants will be well into growth. Apply a general fertilizer and use cane supports to keep things tidy.
Many of your vegetables will have been sown by now, but make sure you keep up with sowing successional crops of salads such as lettuce, radish, beetroot etc.
Re-sow every two weeks for a constant supply.
Remember too that if you have not sown brassicas for cropping next year – you need to get to it straight away!
Early crops of tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers in the greenhouse should be growing strongly, so make sure you are trimming and side shooting if the particular variety requires it. Feed with liquid tomato fertilizer regularly.
Plant up later sowings in pots or direct in the greenhouse or garden.
Earth up potatoes regularly. Plants produce small potatoes up the stems, so earthing up means more potatoes and a greater overall yield.
Carrots are susceptible to attacks of carrot root fly at this time of year.
The female fly lays its eggs on the carrot resulting in the hatching of larvae which bore into the carrot rendering them unusable.
Cover the crop with horticultural fleece to prevent access to the fly.
Now’s the time to be netting ripening fruit if you don’t want to share too many with the birds!
If you have not already done so, then ‘straw-down’ the strawberries.
It keeps the fruit off the ground avoiding fungal botrytis and encouraging ripening of the fruit.
Remove strawberry runners unless you need some new plants for next year.
Feed container-grown plants with a high potash liquid feed.
For blueberries, make sure you irrigate with rainwater as tap water contains lime.
June is the ideal time for pruning privet hedges.
Magnolias too, perhaps surprisingly, are best pruned this time of year when in full summer leaf.
Early flowering shrubs can also be pruned this month.