Jobs to do during Spring/ Summer 2017

Flowers

Sweet Peas can be planted in sunny borders, remember to tie stems onto supports which will encourage quicker climbing and flowering.

Bulbs including lilies and gladioli can be planted out.

Pruning of roses should be completed as soon as possible, remembering to remove any dead, diseased or damaged stems.

Clematis should be pruned back to just above the lowest shoots.

Fuchsias that have survived the winter can be revived keeping the compost slightly moist along with conditions beginning to warm up, then any dead stems should be pruned back. When they begin to grow strongly, watering can be increased along with weekly feeds being started, and, they could also be potted up.

Divide and lift large clumps of Hosta.

Cut back stems of last years Buddleia.

Vegetables.

Onion sets should be planted 10-15cm (4-6") apart, with the tips just showing above soil level. To prevent onion fly cover with fleece. Shallots can also be planted out now, spacing at 15cm (6") intervals in rows 30cm (12") apart.

Buy herbs to plant up in containers near the house.

Time to prick out tomato seedlings.

Fork over light soils, and incorporating organic matter, preparation will be ready for plantings and sowings.

Sow celery seed in pots during March/April placing them in the greenhouse which will produce plants for planting out from May to June. Once conditions are suitable crops such as leek, pea, lettuce, radish, broad bean, parsnip and early carrot can be sown.

Tomato varieties can be sown now in a heated greenhouse. To encourage quick germination sow in a heated propagator, or on a windowsill.

Fruit

Planting of raspberry canes should be completed by the beginning of this month.

Rhubarb can be forced by covering the crowns with either large pots or buckets.

Strawberries can be grown in pots giving a bumper crop, and so that the picking season lasts longer why not grow two or three different varieties.

Branches damaged by birds on apple and cherry trees should be pruned.

Lawns

Mower blades should be set so that just 13mm (½") of grass is cut the first time.

Control perennial weeds by digging out the roots or using a weedkiller containing Glyphosate. Should moss be a problem on the lawn Moss Killers can be applied at this time.

Trees & Shrubs

Replanting of trees and shrubs should be carried out before they come into full growth.

Container trees should be repotted or top-dressed.

Lavatera and hardy fuchsias should be pruned back to live wood.

Hedges can be planted at this time by spacing the plants evenly, planting holes should be more than large enough for plant roots, then add some planting mixture to the soil before filling in.

Ponds

As milder spells arrive fish can be given some food.

Now is the time to remove pond heaters so that they can be cleaned and put away until next winter.

Plant debris should be cleared away from around the pond.

Use a net to scoop out leaves that have fallen into the pond.

 

 

 RHS Wisley

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CHECK YOUR AUTUMN/WINTER TASKS BELOW

Chrysanthemums, remove the growing tips( less on spray and pompom varieties) to encourage bushy growth, plants can be left in the garden over winter. Dahlia stems should be staked and plants fed. The tubers should be lifted once foliage is blackened by the first frosts, left to dry and stored in newspaper in a cool shed for the winter.

Brompton Stocks, Wallflowers and Polyanthus can be bedded out now for your spring display. Hanging Baskets should still be kept well watered!.

Weed. perennial borders and rose beds on a regular basis. Stake tall plants such as Delphiniums, cut dead heads to encourage second showing.

Divide primroses and irises (only if the latter has been undisturbed some years)

Roses. Spray regularly with a systemic insecticide and with a fungicide to protect against mildew and black spot. Apply rose fertilizer. Remove any suckers and dead heads. Burn any fallen leaves infected by blackspot. Prepare new beds, digging in manure.

Cuttings can be taken of rose and lavender. About nine inches, with heel of old wood, remove lower leaves and place in a trench of shallow sand. Also fuchsias, petunia and geranium, to name a few, can be cut across the stem, below a leaf joint removing lower leaves. Place pots in the greenhouse, in a loam and silver sand mixture. Clematis between joints. Insert three inches into good quality loam and leave undisturbed for 6/9 months. Dip all cuttings in Hormone Rooting Powder to speed up the process.

Slugs, slugs, slugs. are very partial to new shoots on any plant, especially Hostas and Dahlias. Scatter slug pellets around any susceptible plants.

Vegetables. Tomato plants- Pick side shoots out regularly. Feed regularly with a good liquid fertilizer to encourage ripening. Continue sowing some lettuce for cold frame propagation. Any marrow, cucumber or courgettes still hanging should be cut and stored. Plant winter lettuces and spring cabbages.

Pruning clematis differ according to variety. In general those flowering before June only need a general tidy up. For those after, cut right back 12 inches. For an excellent container clematis choose 'Josephine' which will flower May- September and each bloom can last for five weeks.

Fruit. New trees should be planted now in well prepared and manured soil. Choose cordon for the small garden, or bush for the medium garden. Prune soft fruit trees, blackcurrants cut away old wood only, gooseberries cut the short new spurs back to 1 inch and new leader side shoots back by a third.

Bulbs. Can be planted now, twice as deep as their height.

Sweet Pea seeds should be soaked in water for 24 hours prior to sow outside in a well drained trench. Plants should withstand the winter to produce excellent flowers early next year.

Hedges can be trimmed now that growth has slowed down. Use secataurs for large leaved hedges such as holly, laurel and bay. Electric/Petrol strimmers for small-leaved, such as privet. Plant new hedging now.

Lawns should be raked, aerated and dressed with a selective weedkiller/mosskiller prior to rain. Mow every week if possible. Lay turf, but keep well watered.

Ponds. Fish should be fed regularly now as live food decreases and winter is around the corner. Thin out overgrown plants. Promptly scoop off any algae/blanket weed that appears on the surface, and add appropriate chemical preparation to the water, to avoid the pea soup effect (available from most Garden Centers). Aquatics and marginal plants should be planted by now, deep-water plants until mid October

Flowers

Sweet Peas can be planted in sunny borders remembering to tie stems onto supports which will encourage quicker climbing and flowering.

Bulbs including lilies and gladioli can be planted out.

Pruning of roses should be completed as soon as possible, remembering to remove any dead, diseased or damaged stems.

Clematis should be pruned back to just above the lowest shoots.

Fuchsias that have survived the winter can be revived keeping the compost slightly moist along with conditions beginning to warm up, then any dead stems should be pruned back. When they begin to grow strongly, watering can be increased along with weekly feeds being started, and, they could also be potted up.

Vegetables

Onion sets should be planted 10-15cm (4-6") apart, with the tips just showing above soil level. To prevent onion fly cover with fleece. Shallots can also be planted out now, spacing at 15cm (6") intervals in rows 30cm (12") apart.

Fork over light soils, and incorporating organic matter, preparation will be ready for plantings and sowings.

Sow celery seed in pots during March/April placing them in the greenhouse which will produce plants for planting out from May to June.Once conditions are suitable crops such as leek, pea, lettuce, radish, broad bean, parsnip and early carrot can be sown.

Tomato varieties can be sown now in a heated greenhouse. To encourage quick germination sow in a heated propagator, or on a windowsill. Prick out seedlings.

Fruit

Planting of raspberry canes should be completed by the beginning of this month.

Rhubarb can be forced by covering the crowns with either large pots or buckets.

Strawberries can be grown in pots giving a bumper crop, and so that the picking season lasts longer why not grow two or three different varieties.

Branches damaged by birds on apple and cherry trees should be pruned.

Lawns

Mower blades should be set so that just 13mm (½") of grass is cut the first time.

Control perennial weeds by digging out the roots or using a weedkiller containing Glyphosate. Should moss be a problem on the lawn Moss Killers can be applied at this time.

Trees & Shrubs

Replanting of trees and shrubs should be carried out before they come into full growth.

Container trees should be re-potted or top-dressed.

Lavatera and hardy fuchsias should be pruned back to live wood.

Hedges can be planted at this time by spacing the plants evenly, planting holes should be more than large enough for plant roots, then add some planting mixture to the soil before filling in.

Ponds

As milder spells arrive fish can be given some food.

Now is the time to remove pond heaters so that they can be cleaned and put away until next winter.

Plant debris should be cleared away from around the pond.

Use a net to scoop out leaves that have fallen into the pond.

Check that you have completed your Winter tasks here

Chrysanthemums- remove the growing tips( less on spray and pompom varieties) to encourage bushy growth, plants can be left in the garden over winter. Dahlia stems should be staked and plants fed. The tubers should be lifted once foliage is blackened by the first frosts, left to dry and stored in newspaper in a cool shed for the winter.

Brompton Stocks- can be bedded out now for your spring display. Hanging Baskets should still be kept well watered!.

Weed.- perennial borders and rose beds on a regular basis. Stake tall plants such as Delphiniums, cut dead heads to encourage second showing.

Flowers-Sow Cyclamen seeds in a heated greenhouse.

Cosmos, Sunflowers and Rudbeckias should be deadheaded.

Gladioli bulbs should be lifted as soon as possible for drying, before any soil is cleaned away or old foliage and flower spikes are cut back, then store until late spring ready for replanting.

To prolong displays of late flowering plants, when frost is forecast in colder areas, cover with fleece.

Use garden compost to mulch borders.

Plant up winter hanging baskets and containers using Pansy, Polyanthus, Primrose, Dwarf Wallflowers, Myosotis and spring flowering bulbs.

Sweet Peas can be sown in a cold frame or unheated greenhouse to overwinter for planting outdoors next March or April.

Once Dahlia foliage has gone black from the first frosts the hollow stems can be cut down to approximately 10cm (4") above the tuber, allow any water to drain by standing tubers upside down and store under frost-free conditions.

Divide primroses and irises (only if the latter has been undisturbed some years)

Roses-. Spray regularly with a systemic insecticide and with a fungicide to protect against mildew and black spot. Apply rose fertilizer. Remove any suckers and dead heads. Burn any fallen leaves infected by blackspot. Prepare new beds, digging in manure.

Cuttings- can be taken of rose and lavender. About nine inches, with heel of old wood, remove lower leaves and place in a trench of shallow sand. Also fuchsias, petunia and geranium, to name a few, can be cut across the stem, below a leaf joint removing lower leaves. Place pots in the greenhouse, in a loam and silver sand mixture. Clematis between joints. Insert three inches into good quality loam and leave undisturbed for 6/9 months. Dip all cuttings in Hormone Rooting Powder to speed up the process.

Slugs, slugs, slugs. are very partial to new shoots on any plant, especially Hostas and Dahlias. Scatter slug pellets around any susceptible plants.

In the Greenhouse

Tuberous rooted Begonias should have been dried off and stored in a frost-free greenhouse over the winter.

Muscari, Daffodils, Crocus, Snowdrops along with unprepared Hyacinths should have been potted up for colour later in the winter and early spring.

If possible tender perennials such as Fuchsias that are in containers should be moved into the greenhouse for the winter giving protection from low temperatures which occur at night in some parts of the country.

Vegetables-Lift and store Potatoes, Carrots and Beetroot. Winter salads should be protected with a covering of fleece. Bean poles and supports should be cleaned and stored. Cut down Asparagus to near ground level.

Early in the month Spring Cabbages can be transplanted, spacing them 30cm (12") apart.

Tomato plants- Pick side shoots out regularly. Feed regularly with a good liquid fertilizer to encourage ripening. Continue sowing some lettuce for cold frame propagation. Any marrow, cucumber or courgettes still hanging should be cut and stored. Plant winter lettuces and spring cabbages.

Pruning-Clematis differ according to variety. In general those flowering before June only need a general tidy up. For those after, cut right back 12 inches. For an excellent container clematis choose 'Josephine' which will flower May- September and each bloom can last for five weeks.

Fruit.- New trees should be planted now in well prepared and manured soil. Choose cordon for the small garden, or bush for the medium garden. Prune soft fruit trees, blackcurrants cut away old wood only, gooseberries cut the short new spurs back to 1 inch and new leader side shoots back by a third.

Bulbs.- Can be planted now, twice as deep as their height.

Sweet Pea -seeds should be soaked in water for 24 hours prior to sow outside in a well drained trench. Plants should withstand the winter to produce excellent flowers early next year.

Hedges- can be trimmed now that growth has slowed down. Use secataurs for large leaved hedges such as holly, laurel and bay. Electric/Petrol strimmers for small-leaved, such as privet. Plant new hedging now.

Lawns- should be raked, aerated and dressed with a selective weedkiller/mosskiller prior to rain. Mow every week if possible. Lay turf, but keep well watered.

Ponds-Level should be checked in case of leaks.

Before icy conditions set in an electric pond heater can be fitted.

Fish will require somewhere to shelter once floating plants have died down, such as lengths of plastic downpipe guttering on the bottom of the pond.

Once the water temperature drops below 5ºC (41ºF) stop feeding fish

Edges of the pond should also be checked to make sure it hasn’t dropped below the water line. Any repairs should be carried out promptly.

Any dirty or neglected ponds should be cleaned out.

Stretching a net across the water surface will stop leaves falling in the pond which causes pollution. Now and again lift the net so the leaves can be removed. If you do not wish to cover with a net, a fishing net could be used regularly to scoop out leaves and debris.

Pumps should be removed, cleaned and stored for the winter in a frost-free place.

Fish should be fed regularly now as live food decreases and winter is around the corner. Thin out overgrown plants. Promptly scoop off any algae/blanket weed that appears on the surface, and add appropriate chemical preparation to the water, to avoid the pea soup effect (available from most Garden Centers). Aquatics and marginal plants should be planted by now, deep-water plants until mid October.

Check that you have completed your Summer tasks below.

Hanging Baskets can now be made up. Line your basket with moss ( or a substitute liner), putting a circle of polythene on the bottom, to help water retention. Part fill with. a mixture of peat and vermiculite and place three or four trailing lobelia or ivyleafed geraniums through the sides. Continue filling with peat and place a zonal pelargonium or bush Fuchsia in the center, surrounding with petunia surfina, bizzy liz, trailing Fuchsia or any number of plants from the 'hanging basket' section in your garden center. Keep well watered!.

Plant your container-grown fruit trees now, but keep well watered. Prune Spring flowering trees. Your bedding plants and outdoor Chrysanthemums can be put out mid month removing growing tip to encourage bushy growth. Dahlia tubers should planted 6in deep, dahlia plants can be put out if frost free.

Weed. perennial borders and rose beds on a regular basis. Stake tall plants such as Delphiniums.

Sow. Biennials such as waIlflowers, forget-me-nots and sweet williams for next Spring. Divide primroses.

Roses. Spray regularly with a systemic insecticide and with a fungicide to protect against mildew and black spot. Apply rose fertilizer. Remove any suckers. Burn any fallen leaves infected by blackspot.

Slugs, slugs, slugs. are very partial to new shoots on any plant, especially Hostas and Dahlias. Scatter slug pellets around any susceptible plants.

Vegetables. Tomato plants can be put out after hardening off in a cool greenhouse. Pick side shoots out regularly soon as they get l in. in length. Feed with a good liquid fertilizers soon as the first truss has set. Continue sowing some lettuces, carrots, peas, cabbages, spinach and runner beans every three weeks to ensure a continuous crop. Any marrow, cucumber or courgette plants can now be put outside and given liquid manure after two weeks. Earth up potatoes to the neck of plants to ensure tubers do not turn green.

Pruning clematis differ according to variety. In general those flowering before June only need a general tidy up. For those after, cut right back to 12 inches. For an excellent container clematis choose 'Josephine' which will flower May- September and each bloom can last for five weeks.

Fruit. Protect strawberry plants and soft fruit bushes against birds by covering with netting.

Bulbs. Can be lifted, if space is needed, after flowering. Deadhead others. Do not cut leaves until dead.

Lawns should be raked, aerated and dressed with a selective weedkiller/mosskiller prior to rain. Mow every week if possible. Lay turf, but keep well watered.

Ponds. Fish should be fed regularly now that it is warmer. Promptly scoop off any algae/blanket weed that appears on the surface, and add appropriate chemical preparation to the water, to avoid the pea soup effect (available from most Garden Centers). Plant aquatics and marginal plants now until July, deep-water plants until September.

 

Check below to see that you have completed your Autumn tasks

Chrysanthemums, remove the growing tips( less on spray and pompom varieties) to encourage bushy growth, plants can be left in the garden over winter. Dahlia stems should be staked and plants fed. The tubers should be lifted once foliage is blackened by the first frosts, left to dry and stored in newspaper in a cool shed for the winter.

Brompton Stocks, Wallflowers and Polyanthus can be bedded out now for your spring display. Hanging Baskets should still be kept well watered!.

Weed. perennial borders and rose beds on a regular basis. Stake tall plants such as Delphiniums, cut dead heads to encourage second showing.

Divide primroses and irises (only if the latter has been undisturbed some years)

Roses. Spray regularly with a systemic insecticide and with a fungicide to protect against mildew and black spot. Apply rose fertilizer. Remove any suckers and dead heads. Burn any fallen leaves infected by blackspot. Prepare new beds, digging in manure.

Cuttings can be taken of rose and lavender. About nine inches, with heel of old wood, remove lower leaves and place in a trench of shallow sand. Also fuchsias, petunia and geranium, to name a few, can be cut across the stem, below a leaf joint removing lower leaves. Place pots in the greenhouse, in a loam and silver sand mixture. Clematis between joints. Insert three inches into good quality loam and leave undisturbed for 6/9 months. Dip all cuttings in Hormone Rooting Powder to speed up the process.

Slugs, slugs, slugs. are very partial to new shoots on any plant, especially Hostas and Dahlias. Scatter slug pellets around any susceptible plants.

Vegetables. Tomato plants- Pick side shoots out regularly. Feed regularly with a good liquid fertilizer to encourage ripening. Continue sowing some lettuce for cold frame propagation. Any marrow, cucumber or courgettes still hanging should be cut and stored. Plant winter lettuces and spring cabbages.

Pruning clematis differ according to variety. In general those flowering before June only need a general tidy up. For those after, cut right back 12 inches. For an excellent container clematis choose 'Josephine' which will flower May- September and each bloom can last for five weeks.

Fruit. New trees should be planted now in well prepared and manured soil. Choose cordon for the small garden, or bush for the medium garden. Prune soft fruit trees, blackcurrants cut away old wood only, gooseberries cut the short new spurs back to 1 inch and new leader side shoots back by a third.

Bulbs. Can be planted now, twice as deep as their height.

Sweet Pea seeds should be soaked in water for 24 hours prior to sow outside in a well drained trench. Plants should withstand the winter to produce excellent flowers early next year.

Hedges can be trimmed now that growth has slowed down. Use secateurs for large leaved hedges such as holly, laurel and bay. Electric/Petrol trimmers for small-leaved, such as privet. Plant new hedging now.

Lawns should be raked, aerated and dressed with a selective weedkiller/mosskiller prior to rain. Mow every week if possible. Lay turf, but keep well watered.

Ponds. Fish should be fed regularly now as live food decreases and winter is around the corner. Thin out overgrown plants. Promptly scoop off any algae/blanket weed that appears on the surface, and add appropriate chemical preparation to the water, to avoid the pea soup effect (available from most Garden Centres). Aquatics and marginal plants should be planted by now, deep-water plants until mid October

Check below to see that you have completed your Summer tasks.

Please check below that you have completed your May Tasks

Dahlia tubers should planted 6in deep, but dahlia plants are best held in the greenhouse until frost free. Plant your container-grown fruit trees now, but keep well watered. Prune Spring flowering trees late this month or in June. Your bedding plants and outdoor Chrysanthemums can be put out mid month removing tips to encourage bushy growth. Hanging Baskets can now be made up. Line your basket with moss (or a substitute liner), putting a circle of polythene on the bottom, to help water retention. Part fill with. a mixture of peat and vermiculite and place three or four trailing lobelia or ivy leafed geraniums through the sides. Continue filling with peat and place a zonal pelargonium or bush Fuchsia in the center, surrounding with petunia surfina, bizzy liz, trailing Fuchsia or any number of plants from the 'hanging basket' section in your garden.

Weed. perennial borders on a regular basis and stake tall plants such as Delphiniums.

Sow. Biennials such as wallflowers, forget-me-nots and sweet williams for next Spring.

Roses. Spray regularly with a systemic insecticide and with a fungicide to protect against mildew and black spot. Apply rose fertilizer. Remove any suckers.

Slugs, slugs, slugs. are very partial to new shoots on any plant, especially Hostas. Scatter slug pellets around any susceptible plants.

Vegetables. Tomato plants can be put out towards the end of the month after hardening off in a cool greenhouse. Pick side shoots out regularly soon as they get I in. in length. Feed with a good liquid fertilizers soon as the first truss has set. Sow some lettuces, carrots, peas, cabbages, spinach and runner beans every three weeks to ensure a continuous crop. Any marrow, cucumber or courgette plants can now be put outside and given liquid manure after two weeks.

Fruit. Protect strawberry plants and soft fruit bushes against birds by covering with netting.

Bulbs. Can be lifted, if space is needed, after flowering. Deadhead others.

Lawns should be raked, aerated and dressed with a selective weedkiller/mosskiller prior to rain. Mow every week in May and June if possible. Lay turf, but keep well watered.

Ponds. Fish should be fed daily now that temperatures are above 50F. Promptly scoop off any algae/blanket weed that appears on the surface and add the appropriate chemical preparation to the water, to avoid the pea soup effect (available from most Garden Centers). Plant aquatics and marginal plants from now until July, deep-water plants until September.

 

Check below that you have completed your August tasks

Chrysanthemums remove the growing tips( less on spray and pompom varieties) to encourage bushy growth. Dahlia stems should be staked and plants fed.

Bromton Stocks can be bedded out now for your spring display.

Hanging Baskets should be kept well watered!.

Weed. perennial borders and rose beds on a regular basis. Stake tall plants such as Delphiniums, cut dead heads to encourage second show.

Divide primroses and irises (only if the latter has been undisturbed some years).

Roses. Spray regularly with a systemic insecticide and with a fungicide( to protect against mildew and black spot). Apply rose fertilizer. Remove any suckers and dead heads. Burn any fallen leaves infected by blackspot.

Cuttings can be taken of rose and lavender. About nine inches, with heel of old wood, remove lower leaves and place in a trench of shallow sand. Also fuchsia, petunia and geranium, to name a few, can be cut across the stem, below a leaf joint removing lower leaves. Place pots in the greenhouse, in a loam and silver sand mixture. Clematis between joints. Insert three inches into good quality loam. and leave undisturbed for 6/9 months. Dip all cuttings in Hormone Rooting Powder to speed up the process.

Slugs, slugs, slugs. are very partial to new shoots on any plant, especially Hostas and Dahlias. Scatter slug pellets around any susceptible plants.

Vegetables. Tomato plants- Pick side shoots out regularly. Feed regularly with a good liquid fertilizer to encourage ripening. Continue sowing some lettuce for cold frame propagation. Any marrow, cucumber or courgette plants should be given liquid manure.

Pruning clematis differ according to variety. In general those flowering before June only need a general tidy up. For those after, cut right back 12 inches. For an excellent container clematis choose 'Josephine' which will flower May-September and each bloom can last for five weeks.

Fruit. Protect soft fruit bushes against birds by covering with netting. Pick and enjoy.

Bulbs. Can be planted now, twice as deep as their height.

Sweet Pea seeds should be soaked in water for 24 hours prior to sowing outside in a well drained trench. Plants should withstand the winter to produce excellent flowers early next year.

Hedges can be trimmed now that growth has slowed down. Use secateurs for large leaved hedges such as holly, laurel and bay. Electric/Petrol trimmers for small-leaved, such as privet.

Lawns should be raked, aerated and dressed with a selective weedkiller/mosskiller prior to rain. Mow every week if possible. Lay turf, but keep well watered.

Ponds. Fish should be fed regularly now as live food decreases and winter is around the corner. Thin out overgrown plants. Promptly scoop off any algae/blanket weed that appears on the surface, and add appropriate chemical preparation to the water, to avoid the pea soup effect (available from most Garden Centres). Plant aquatics and marginal plants now, deep-water plants until September.

 

Check below to see that you have completed your April tasks

Beware of slugs and snails eating the new shoots on your precious plants, such as hostas, lilies and delphiniums.

Vegetables-Can be sown in the greenhouse to obtain an early start such as Runner and French Beans, Aubergine, Capsicum, Celeriac, Courgette and Marrow, Cucumber and Melon at the end of the month. Beetroot, carrots, lettuce, leeks, peas and perpetual spinach outdoors. Use polythene or fleece for protection in case of frost. Shallots, if not already planted should be in as soon as possible. Tomato can also be sown now in a warm place which will provide plants for either planting out in early June or growing on in an unheated greenhouse. Herbs can be sown in the greenhouse or outdoors. Continue to make sowings of Carrot and Lettuce on a regular basis. Second Early Potatoes should be planted during the early part of the month and Main Crop varieties towards the end. Onion Sets, along with seedlings already grown, can be planted in rows remembering to leave enough space so as you can use the hoe for weeding. Plant Asparagus Crowns in beds that have been prepared well.

Flowers- Dead-head or remove any fading flower-heads from primroses, pansies and daffodils. Increase water and feeding as plants grow. Check the compost in pots of spring bulbs to make sure they stay moist, water well if it should have dried out. Put plant supports in for perennials. Dahlias can be planted out this month, for early flowers it is best to start them off in a greenhouse. Plant summer flowering bulbs. Lilies can be grown-on in pots for filling any unexpected gaps you may find in the garden. Sweet Peas may be sown outside in their flowering position. For a continuous show of summer flowering from gladioli, plant in succession over the coming weeks. Sow annuals outdoors and half-hardy bedding such as Lobelia and petunia indoors.

Lawns-When the weather is mild and the grass is growing, apply lawn fertiliser and weedkiller to established lawns. If moss is a problem, treat with a moss killer and rake out the dead moss and then fork over so that growth and surface drainage will be improved. Lawn fertiliser should be applied to promote strong, healthy growth. Repair bumps and hollows by peeling back turf and adding or removing soil. Regular mowing may be necessary. April is the best month for sowing grass seed.

Ponds- Remove blanketweed with a rake so that it doesn't take over.Waterlilies should be fed with a specially formulated feed and divided if too large along with marginal plants. Start feeding fish regularly.

 

Check that you have completed your August tasks below.

Chrysanthemums remove the growing tips( less on spray and pompom varieties) to encourage bushy growth stems should be staked and plants fed.

Hanging Baskets should be kept well watered!.

Weed perennial borders and rose beds on a regular basis. Stake tall plants such as Delphiniums, cut dead heads to encourage second show.

Sow. Biennials such as wallflowers, forget-me-nots and sweet williams for next Spring. Divide primroses and irises (only if the latter has been undisturbed for some years).

Roses. Spray regularly with a systemic insecticide and with a fungicide( to protect against mildew and black spot. Apply rose fertilizer. Remove any suckers and dead heads. Bum any fallen leaves infected by blackspot.

Slugs, slugs, slugs. are very partial to new shoots on any plant, especially Hostas and Dahlias. Scatter slug pellets around any susceptible plants.

Vegetables. Tomato plants- Pick side shoots out regularly. Feed regularly with a good liquid fertilizer soon as the first truss has set. Continue sowing some lettuces, carrots, peas, cabbages, spinach and runner beans every three weeks to ensure a continuous crop. Any marrow, cucumber or courgette plants should be given liquid manure.

Pruning clematis differ according to variety. In general those flowering before June only need a general tidy up. For those after, cut right back to 12 inches. For an excellent container clematis choose 'Josephine' which will flower May- September and each bloom can last for five weeks.

Cuttings can be taken about 8in. in length. Softwood cut below joint, harder types(e.g. roses) pull off with a heel attached. Clematis cut between joints. Insert three inches into good quality loam and leave undisturbed for 6/9 months. Geranium cuttings 4in. long can be taken. Select shoots with no buds and cut below a joint. Plant in pots in greenhouse in a mixture of silver sand and peat.

Fruit. Protect strawberry plants and soft fruit bushes against birds by covering with netting Pick and enjoy your soft fruit.

Bulbs. Can be lifted and stored, if space is needed, after flowering. Dead- head others. Do not cut leaves until dead.

Hedges can be trimmed now that growth has slowed down. Use secateurs for large leaved hedges such as holly, laurel and bay. Electric/Petrol trimmers for small-leaved, such as privet.

Lawns should be raked, aerated and dressed with a selective weedkiller/mosskiller prior to rain. Mow every week if possible. Lay turf, but keep well watered.

Ponds. Fish should be fed regularly now that it is warmer. Thin out overgrown plants. Promptly scoop off any algae/blanket weed that appears on the surface, and add appropriate chemical preparation to water, to avoid the pea soup effect (available from most Garden Centers). Plant aquatics and marginal plants now, deep-water plants until September.

Check below that you have completed your June/July tasks

Hanging Baskets can now be made up. Line your basket with moss ( or a substitute liner), putting a circle of polythene on the bottom, to help water retention. Part fill with. a mixture of peat and vermiculite and place three or four trailing lobelia or ivy leafed geraniums through the sides. Continue filling with peat and place a zonal pelargonium or bush Fuchsia in the center, surrounding with petunia surfina, bizzy liz, trailing Fuchsia or any number of plants from the 'hanging basket' section in your garden centre. Keep well watered!.

Plant your container-grown fruit trees now, but keep well watered. Prune Spring flowering trees. Your bedding plants and outdoor Chrysanthemums can be put out mid month removing growing tip to encourage bushy growth. Dahlia tubers should planted 6in deep, dahlia plants can be put out if frost free.

Weed. perennial borders and rose beds on a regular basis. Stake tall plants such as Delphiniums.

Sow. Biennials such as waIlflowers, forget-me-nots and sweet williams for next Spring. Divide primroses.

Roses. Spray regularly with a systemic insecticide and with a fungicide to protect against mildew and black spot. Apply rose fertilizer. Remove any suckers. Burn any fallen leaves infected by blackspot.

Slugs, slugs, slugs. are very partial to new shoots on any plant, especially Hostas and Dahlias. Scatter slug pellets around any susceptible plants.

Vegetables. Tomato plants can be put out after hardening off in a cool greenhouse. Pick side shoots out regularly soon as they get l in. in length. Feed with a good liquid fertilizers soon as the first truss has set. Continue sowing some lettuces, carrots, peas, cabbages, spinach and runner beans every three weeks to ensure a continuous crop. Any marrow, cucumber or courgette plants can now be put outside and given liquid manure after two weeks. Earth up potatoes to the neck of plants to ensure tubers do not turn green.

Pruning clematis differ according to variety. In general those flowering before June only need a general tidy up. For those after, cut right back to 12 inches. For an excellent container clematis choose'Josephine'which will flower May- September and each bloom can last for five weeks.

Fruit. Protect strawberry plants and soft fruit bushes against birds by covering with netting.

Bulbs. Can be lifted, if space is needed, after flowering. Deadhead others. Do not cut leaves until dead.

Lawns should be raked, aerated and dressed with a selective weedkiller/mosskiller prior to rain. Mow every week if possible. Lay turf, but keep well watered.

Ponds. Fish should be fed regularly now that it is warmer. Promptly scoop off any algae/blanket weed that appears on the surface, and add appropriate chemical preparation to the water, to avoid the pea soup effect (available from most Garden Centers). Plant aquatics and marginal plants now until July, deep-water plants until September.

Please check below that you have completed your May Tasks

Plant your container-grown fruit trees now, but keep well watered. Prune Spring flowering trees late this month or in June. Your bedding plants and outdoor Chrysanthemums can be put out mid month removing tips to encourage bushy growth. Dahlia tubers should planted 6in deep, but dahlia plants are best held in the greenhouse until frost free.

Hanging Baskets can now be made up. Line your basket with moss ( or a substitute liner), putting a circle of polythene on the bottom, to help water retention. Part fill with. a mixture of peat and vermiculite and place three or four trailing lobelia or ivyleafed geraniums through the sides. Continue filling with peat and place a zonal pelargonium or bush Fuchsia in the centre, surrounding with petunia surfina, bizzy liz, trailing Fuchsia or any number of plants from the'hanging basket' section in your garden

Weed. perennial borders on a regular basis and stake tall plants such as Delphiniums.

Sow. Biennials such as wallflowers, forget-me-nots and sweet williams for next Spring.

Roses. Spray regularly with a systemic insecticide and with a fungicide to protect against mildew and black spot. Apply rose fertilizer. Remove any suckers.

Slugs, slugs, slugs. are very partial to new shoots on any plant, especially Hostas. Scatter slug pellets around any susceptible plants.

Vegetables. Tomato plants can be put out towards the end of the month after hardening off in a cool greenhouse. Pick side shoots out regularly soon as they get I in. in length. Feed with a good liquid fertilizers soon as the first truss has set. Sow some lettuces, carrots, peas, cabbages, spinach and runner beans every three weeks to ensure a continuous crop. Any marrow, cucumber or courgette plants can now be put outside and given liquid manure after two weeks.

Fruit. Protect strawberry plants and soft fruit bushes against birds by covering with netting.

Bulbs. Can be lifted, if space is needed, after flowering. Deadhead others.

Lawns should be raked, aerated and dressed with a selective weedkiller/mosskiller prior to rain. Mow every week in May and June if possible. Lay turf, but keep well watered.

Ponds. Fish should be fed daily now that temperatures are above 50F. Promptly scoop off any algae/blanket weed that appears on the surface and add the appropriate chemical preparation to the water, to avoid the pea soup effect (available from most Garden Centers). Plant aquatics and marginal plants from now until July, deep-water plants until September.

Please check below that you have comleted yout March/April tasks

Flowers

Sweet Peas can be planted in sunny borders remembering to tie stems onto supports which will encourage quicker climbing and flowering.

Bulbs including lilies and gladioli can be planted out.

Pruning of roses should be completed as soon as possible, remembering to remove any dead, diseased or damaged stems.

Clematis should be pruned back to just above the lowest shoots

Fuchsias that have survived the winter can be revived keeping the compost slightly moist along with conditions beginning to warm up, then any dead stems should be pruned back. When they begin to grow strongly, watering can be increased along with weekly feeds being started, and, they could also be potted up.

Vegetables

Onion sets should be planted 10-15cm (4-6") apart, with the tips just showing above soil level. To prevent onion fly cover with fleece. Shallots can also be planted out now, spacing at 15cm (6") intervals in rows 30cm (12") apart..

Time to prick out tomato seedlings.

Fork over light soils, and incorporating organic matter, preparation will be ready for plantings and sowings.

Sow celery seed in pots during March/April placing them in the greenhouse which will produce plants for planting out from May to June.Once conditions are suitable crops such as leek, pea, lettuce, radish, broad bean, parsnip and early carrot can be sown.

Tomato varieties can be sown now in a heated greenhouse. To encourage quick germination sow in a heated propagator, or on a windowsill.

Fruit

Planting of raspberry canes should be completed by the beginning of this month.

Rhubarb can be forced by covering the crowns with either large pots or buckets.

Strawberries can be grown in pots giving a bumper crop, and so that the picking season lasts longer why not grow two or three different varieties.

Branches damaged by birds on apple and cherry trees should be pruned.

Lawns

Mower blades should be set so that just 13mm (½") of grass is cut the first time.

Control perennial weeds by digging out the roots or using a weed killer containing Glyphosate. Should moss be a problem on the lawn Moss Killers can be applied at this time.

Trees & Shrubs

Replanting of trees and shrubs should be carried out before they come into full growth.

Container trees should be repotted or top-dressed.

Lavatera and hardy fuchsias should be pruned back to live wood.

Hedges can be planted at this time by spacing the plants evenly, planting holes should be more than large enough for plant roots, then add some planting mixture to the soil before filling in.

Ponds

As milder spells arrive fish can be given some food.

Now is the time to remove pond heaters so that they can be cleaned and put away until next winter.

Plant debris should be cleared away from around the pond.

Use a net to scoop out leaves that have fallen into the pond.

Check below that you have completed your February tasks.

Stocks can be bedded out now for your spring display.

Herbaceous borders should have be trimmed back, dug and weeded.

Chrysanthemum plants can be cut back and left in the garden over winter, firm in soil around.

Dahlia tubers should have been lifted, left to dry and stored in newspaper in a cool shed for the winter and dusted with flowers of sulphur. Inspect once a month for rot. Cut down gladioli, lift and store in a frost free building.

Hanging Baskets should have been taken down and stored over winter in a greenhouse leaving in plants such as fuchsia, or replanted with winter flowering pansies and hardy evergreens, such as ivy.

Divide primroses and irises (only if the latter has been undisturbed some years).

Roses. Prune lightly and spray with a systemic insecticide and with fungicide to protect against mildew and black spot. Burn any fallen leaves infected by blackspot and generally tidy beds. Ensure bushes firm in the soil by 'heeling in'. Prepare new beds, digging in manure. new plants available now.

Cuttings can be taken of rose and lavender. About nine inches, with heel of old wood, remove lower leaves and place in a trench of shallow sand. Also fuchsia, petunia and geranium, to name a few, can be cut across the stem, below a leafjoint removing lower leaves. Place pots in the greenhouse, in a loam and silver sand mixture. Clematis inbetween. Insert three inches into good quality loam and leave undisturbed for 6/9 months. Dip all cuttings in Hormone Rooting Powder to speed up the process.

Fruit. New trees should be planted now in well prepared and manured soil. Choose cordon for the small garden, or bush for the medium garden. Prune soft fruit trees, blackcurrants cut away old wood only, gooseberries cut the short new spurs back to 1 inch and new leader side shoots back by a third. Apple and Pear trees can be pruned.

 Have a final sit down with all those seed and plant catalogues planing your 2008 garden.

Vegetables. Continue sowing some lettuce for cold frame propagation. Any marrow, cucumber or courgettes still hanging should be cut at stored. Plant out winter lettuces and spring cabbages.

Pruning. Clematis differ according to variety. In general those flowering before June only need a general tidy up. For those after, cut right back to 12 inches. For an excellent container clematis choose 'Josephine' which will flower May- September and each bloom can last for five weeks.

Bulbs. Spring flowering bulbs should really have been planted by now if not, put them in as soon as possible for a late display. Lilies can be planted.

Sweet Pea seeds should be soaked in water for 24 hours prior to sowing outside in a well drained trench. Plants should withstand the winter and produce excellent flowers early this year.

Hedges can be trimmed now that growth has slowed down. Use secataurs for large leaved hedges such as holly, laurel and bay. Electric/Petrol strimmers for small-leaved, such as privet. Plant new hedging now.

Lawns should be raked, aerated and dressed with a selective weedkiller/mosskiller prior to rain. You should have given the lawn final cut, however if there is a prolonged mild spell still mow if needed. Time to overhaul the machines.

Ponds. Fish should not need to be fed with temperatures below 50c. Keep a small area of the pond free from ice.

 

Check that you have completed your March tasks

Beware of slugs and snails eating the new shoots on your precious plants.

Weeds-Warmth can now be felt from the sun which can result in weed seeds germinating. It is a good idea to attack weeds while they are young and, if the surface soil is dry, use the Dutch hoe to prevent them becoming established.

Herbaceous border perennials can be divided and borders forked over before these perennials make a lot of new growth. Prune roses as soon as possible before this year's new growth is well developed.

Plug Plants become available in the Nursery at the end of this month, and if you have somewhere warm and light to keep them you can get a good start by growing them to a larger size. However, the roots of these tiny plants are very prone to drying out, so pot them right away

Dahlias-Take cuttings from new shoots on tubers. The cuttings will root more quickly in a cool greenhouse if the pots are placed in a large box covered with transparent plastic to conserve warmth and moisture.

Seedlings and cuttings in the greenhouse or on a windowsill may require some shade on very sunny days when the sun's rays are increased by the glass. Temperatures can also drop like a stone at night, so give these seedlings extra protection from the cold, and if you can't supply heat, cover the plants with horticultural fleece.

Fuchsia plants grown from cuttings will need repotting regularly so that the growth is not checked. Always use fresh compost such as John Innes No.1 for this job. Keep pot size increase to a minimum as too much compost unoccupied by roots can turn the compost sour.

 Prune summer flowering heathers by cutting the heads off the dead flower spikes which have protected these plants throughout the winter. Pruning too early risks damage from late frosts. Too late pruning delays flowering and can cause the heathers not to flower at all. If you don't prune, the plants become straggly and the life of the heather bed is shortened. Always cut off stems at the base of the flowers without cutting into old wood.

Clean & wash frames and cloches inside and out with soapy water to clean. This ensures maximum light passes through the glass of plastic to reach seedlings and crops at this dull time of year.Use a pressure washer or chemical cleaner to clean paths, steps, paving and patios.

Sowing indoors- seeds of summer bedding plants as well as sweet peas and they can be started off in individual peat pots to keep the roots from being tangled up with other plants. Then the sweet peas can be planted into the open ground later in the season, pots and all, to avoid root damage.

Sowing Outdoors-There is no need to dig soil deeply every year unless you want to incorporate more compost, gravel or other soil conditioners. Forking over the surface to remove old crops and weeds should be sufficient for most people. Mushroom compost can simply be raked over the soil for the worms to work in over the coming weeks.

Mulch.Scatter garden compost around the base of fruit trees, shrubs and roses. Avoid piling the mulch up against their stems, as this could cause the bark to rot. Discover different materials that can be used as mulch. Such as chipped bark, but make sure that the ground is moist and apply a dressing of Growmore fertiliser at the rate of 2oz/sq yd.

Transplant evergreen shrubs, roses and conifers or plant new ones, including hedges. Planting early means new roots start to grow almost immediately, helping the plants to establish quickly. Keep well watered.

Lawns should be raked and aerated. Check that mowers and garden machinery are in good working order and ready possible use this month.

Ponds-Clear away old plant debris from around the margins of ponds and use a net to scoop out any leaves that have fallen into the water.

Please check below that you have completed your February tasks

Herbaceous borders should have be trimmed back, dug and weeded.

Chrysanthemum plants can be cut back and left in the garden over winter, firm in soil around.

Dahlia tubers should be lifted once foliage is blackened by the first frosts, left to dry and stored in newspaper in a cool shed for the winter and dusted with flowers of sulphur. Inspect once a month for rot. Cut down gladioli, lift and store in a frost free building.

Stocks can be bedded out now for your spring display.

Hanging Baskets should have been taken down and stored over winter in a greenhouse leaving in plants such as fuchsia, or replanted with winter flowering pansies and hardy evergreens, such as ivy.

Divide primroses and irises (only if the latter has been undisturbed some years).

Roses. Prune lightly and spray with a systemic insecticide and with fungicide to protect against mildew and black spot. Burn any fallen leaves infected by blackspot and generally tidy beds. Ensure bushes firm in the soil by 'heeling in'. Prepare new beds, digging in manure. new plants available now.

Cuttings can be taken of rose and lavender. About nine inches, with heel of old wood, remove lower leaves and place in a trench of shallow sand. Also fuchsia, petunia and geranium, to name a few, can be cut across the stem, below a leafjoint removing lower leaves. Place pots in the greenhouse, in a loam and silver sand mixture. Clematis between. Insert three inches into good quality loam and leave undisturbed for 6/9 months. Dip all cuttings in Hormone Rooting Powder to speed up the process.

Sit down with all those seed and plant catalogues planing your 2018 garden and have a very Happy New Year.

Vegetables. Continue sowing some lettuce for cold frame propagation. Any marrow, cucumber or courgettes still hanging should be cut at stored. Plant out winter lettuces and spring cabbages.

Pruning. Clematis differ according to variety. In general those flowering before June only need a general tidy up. For those after, cut right back to 12 inches. For an excellent container clematis choose 'Josephine' which will flower May- September and each bloom can last for five weeks.

Fruit. New trees should be planted now in well prepared and manured soil. Choose cordon for the small garden, or bush for the medium garden. Prune soft fruit trees, blackcurrants cut away old wood only, gooseberries cut the short new spurs back to 1 inch and new leader side shoots back by a third. Apple and Pear trees can be pruned before winter sets in.

Bulbs. Spring flowering bulbs should really have been planted by now if not, put them in as soon as possible for a late display. Lilies can be planted.

Sweet Pea seeds should be soaked in water for 24 hours prior to sowing outside in a well drained trench. Plants should withstand the winter and produce excellent flowers early this year.

Hedges can be trimmed now that growth has slowed down. Use secateurs for large leaved hedges such as holly, laurel and bay. Electric/Petrol trimmers for small-leaved, such as privet. Plant new hedging now.

Lawns should be raked, aerated and dressed with a selective weedkiller/mosskiller prior to rain. You should have given the lawn final cut. Time to overhaul the machines.

Ponds. Fish should not need to be fed with temperatures below 50c. Keep a small area of the pond free from ice.

Please check below that you have completed your July tasks.

Plant your container-grown fruit trees now, but keep well watered. Prune Spring flowering trees. Your bedding plants and outdoor Chrysanthemums should be out now, removing the growing tips( leave on spray and pompom varieties) to encourage bushy growth. Dahlia stems should be staked and plants fed.

Hanging Baskets should be hanging by now, if not. line your basket with moss ( or a substitute liner), putting a circle of polythene on the bottom, to help water retention. Part fill with a mixture of peat and vermiculite and place three or four trailing lobelia or ivy~leafed geraniums through the sides. Continue filling with peat and place a zonal pelargonium or bush Fuchsia in the centre, surrounding with, petunia surfina, bizzy liz, trailing Fuchsia or any number of plants from the 'hanging basket' section in your garden centre. Keep well watered.

Weed. perennial borders and rose beds on a regular basis. Stake tall plants such as Delphiniums, cut dead heads to encourage second showing.

Sow. Biennials such as wallflowers, forget-me-nots and sweet williams for next Spring. Divide primroses and irises (only if the latter has been undisturbed for some years).

Roses. Spray regularly with a systemic insecticide and with a fungicide( to protect against mildew and black spot. Apply rose fertilizer. Remove any suckers and dead heads. Bum any fallen leaves infected by blackspot.

Slugs, slugs, slugs. are very partial to new shoots on any plant, especially Hostas and Dahlias. Scatter slug pellets around any susceptible plants.

Vegetables. Tomato plants can be put outside or in a cool greenhouse depending on variety. Pick side shoots out regularly soon as they grow in length. Feed regularly with a good liquid fertilizer soon as the first truss has set. Continue sowing some lettuces, carrots, peas, cabbage, spinach and runner beans every three weeks to ensure a continuous crop. Any marrow, cucumber or courgette plants can now be put outside and given liquid manure after two weeks. Earth up potatoes to the neck of plants to ensure tubers do not turn green.

Pruning clematis differ according to variety. In general those flowering before June only need a general tidy up. For those after, cut right back to 12 inches. For an excellent container clematis choose 'Josephine' which will flower May- September and each bloom can last for five weeks.

Fruit. Protect strawberry plants and soft fruit bushes against birds by covering with netting. Pick and enjoy your soft fruit.

Bulbs. Can be lifted and stored, if space is needed, after flowering. Dead- head others. Do not cut leaves until dead.

Lawns should be raked, aerated and dressed with a selective weedkiller/mosskiller prior to rain. Mow every week if possible, Lay turf, but keep well watered.

Ponds. Fish should be fed regularly now that it is warmer. Thin out overgrown plants. Promptly scoop off any algae/blanket weed that appears on the surface, and add appropriate chemical preparation to water, to avoid the pea soup effect (available from most Garden Centres). Plant aquatics and marginal plants now until July, deep water plants until September.

 

Please check below that you have completed your August tasks.

Crysanthemums remove the growing tips( less on spray and pompom varieties) to encourage bushy growth stems should be staked and plants fed.

Hanging Baskets should be kept well watered!.

Weed perennial borders and rose beds on a regular basis. Stake tall plants such as Delphiniums, cut dead heads to encourage second show.

Sow. Biennials such as wallflowers, forget-me-nots and sweet williams for next Spring. Divide primroses and irises (only if the latter has been undisturbed for some years).

Roses. Spray regularly with a systemic insecticide and with a fungicide( to protect against mildew and black spot. Apply rose fertilizer. Remove any suckers and dead heads. Bum any fallen leaves infected by blackspot.

Slugs, slugs, slugs. are very partial to new shoots on any plant, especially Hostas and Dahlias. Scatter slug pellets around any susceptible plants.

Vegetables. Tomato plants- Pick side shoots out regularly. Feed regularly with a good liquid fertilizer soon as the first truss has set. Continue sowing some lettuces, carrots, peas, cabbages, spinach and runner beans every three weeks to ensure a continuous crop. Any marrow, cucumber or courgette plants should be given liquid manure.

Pruning clematis differ according to variety. In general those flowering before June only need a general tidy up. For those after, cut right back to 12 inches. For an excellent container clematis choose 'Josephine' which will flower May- September and each bloom can last for five weeks.

Cuttings can be taken about 8in. in length. Softwood cut below joint, harder types(e.g. roses) pull off with a heel attached. Clematis cut between joints. Insert three inches into good quality loam and leave undisturbed for 6/9 months. Geranium cuttings 4in. long can be taken. Select shoots with no buds and cut below a joint. Plant in pots in greenhouse in a mixture of silver sand and peat.

Fruit. Protect strawberry plants and soft fruit bushes against birds by covering with netting Pick and enjoy your soft fruit.

Bulbs. Can be lifted and stored, if space is needed, after flowering. Dead- head others. Do not cut leaves until dead.

Hedges can be trimmed now that growth has slowed down. Use secateurs for large leaved hedges such as holly, laurel and bay. Electric/Petrol trimmers for small-leaved, such as privet.

Lawns should be raked, aerated and dressed with a selective weedkiller/mosskiller prior to rain. Mow every week if possible. Lay turf, but keep well watered.

Ponds. Fish should be fed regularly now that it is warmer. Thin out overgrown plants. Promptly scoop off any algae/bl.anket weed that appears on the surface, and add appropriate chemical preparation to water, to avoid the pea soup effect (available from most Garden Centres). Plant aquatics and marginal plants now, deep-water plants until September.

Check below to see that you have completed your May tasks.

Plant your container-grown fruit trees now, but keep well watered. Prune Spring flowering trees late this month or in June. Your bedding plants and outdoor Chrysanthemums can be put out mid month removing tips to encourage bushy growth. Summer bulbs such as Lillies and Dahlia tubers should planted 6in deep in well drained soil, but dahlia plants are best held in the greenhouse until frost free.

 Hanging Baskets can now be made up. Line your basket with moss ( or a substitute liner), putting a circle of polythene on the bottom, to help water retention. Part fill with. a mixture of peat and vermiculite and place three or four trailing lobelia or ivyleafed geraniums through the sides. Continue filling with peat and place a zonal pelargonium or bush Fuchsia in the centre, surrounding with petunia surfina, bizzy liz, trailing Fuchsia or any number of plants from the'hanging basket' section in your garden

Weed. perennial borders on a regular basis and stake tall plants such as Delphiniums.

Sow. Biennials such as wallflowers, forget-me-nots and sweet williams for next Spring.

Feed. Rhododendrons with an acid fertilizer to stop leaves turning yellow.

Roses. Spray regularly with a systemic insecticide and with a fungicide to protect against mildew and black spot. Put a layer of mulch around the plant to conserve moisture and apply rose fertilizer. Remove any suckers.

Slugs, slugs, slugs. are very partial to new shoots on any plant, especially Hostas and Strawberries. Scatter slug pellets around any susceptible plants.

Vegetables. Tomato plants can be put out towards the end of the month after hardening off in a cool greenhouse. Pick side shoots out regularly soon as they get 1in. in length. Feed with a good liquid fertilizers soon as the first truss has set. Sow some lettuces, carrots, peas, cabbages, spinach and runner beans every three weeks to ensure a continuous crop. Any marrow, cucumber or courgette plants can now be put outside and given liquid manure after two weeks. Plant Potatoes for a late summer crop in rows 24in. apart and with a 12in. gap between each.

Fruit. Protect strawberry plants and soft fruit bushes against birds by covering with netting.

Bulbs. Can be lifted, if space is needed, after flowering. Deadhead others.

Lawns should be raked, aerated and dressed with a selective weedkiller/mosskiller prior to rain. Mow every week in May and June if possible. Lay turf, but keep well watered.

Ponds. Fish should be fed daily now that temperatures are above 50F. Promptly scoop off any algae/blanket weed that appears on the surface and add the appropriate chemical preparation to the water, to avoid the pea soup effect (available from most Garden Centres). Plant aquatics and marginal plants from now until July, deep-water plants until September.

Please check below that you have completed your September tasks.

Chrysanthemums, remove the growing tips( less on spray and pompom varieties) to encourage bushy growth. Dahlia stems should be staked and plants fed.

Bromton Stocks, Pansy, Polyanthus andWallflowers can be bedded out now for your spring displays.

Hanging Baskets should still be kept well watered!.

Weed. perennial borders and rose beds on a regular basis. Stake tall plants such as Delphiniums, cut dead heads to encourage second show.

Divide primroses and irises (only if the latter has been undisturbed some years).

Roses. Spray regularly with a systemic insecticide and with a fungicide( to protect against mildew and black spot). Apply rose fertilizer. Remove any suckers and dead heads. Burn any fallen leaves infected by blackspot.

Cuttings can be taken of rose and lavender. About nine inches, with heel of old wood, remove lower leaves and place in a trench of shallow sand. Also fuchsia, petunia and geranium, to name a few, can be cut across the stem, below a leaf joint removing lower leaves. Place pots in the greenhouse, in a loam and silver sand mixture. Clematis between joints. Insert three inches into good quality loam. and leave undisturbed for 6/9 months. Dip all cuttings in Hormone Rooting Powder to speed up the process.

Slugs, slugs, slugs. are very partial to new shoots on any plant, especially Hostas and Dahlias. Scatter slug pellets around any susceptible plants.

Vegetables. Tomato plants- Pick side shoots out regularly. Feed regularly with a good liquid fertilizer to encourage ripening. Continue sowing some lettuce for cold frame propagation. Any marrow, cucumber or courgette plants should be given liquid manure and cut towards the end of the month.Maincrop potatoes should be lifted and stored in a frost free place.

Pruning clematis differ according to variety. In general those flowering before June only need a general tidy up. For those after, cut right back 12 inches. For an excellent container clematis choose 'Josephine' which will flower May-September and each bloom can last for five weeks.

Fruit. Protect soft fruit bushes against birds by covering with netting. Pick and enjoy.

Bulbs. Can be planted now, twice as deep as their height.

Sweet Pea seeds should be soaked in water for 24 hours prior to sowing outside in a well drained trench. Plants should withstand the winter to produce excellent flowers early next year.

Hedges can be trimmed now that growth has slowed down. Use secateurs for large leaved hedges such as holly, laurel and bay. Electric/Petrol trimmers for small-leaved, such as privet.

Lawns should be raked, aerated and dressed with a selective weedkiller/mosskiller prior to rain. Mow every week if possible. Lay turf, but keep well watered.

Ponds. Fish should be fed regularly now as live food decreases and winter is around the corner. Thin out overgrown plants. Promptly scoop off any algae/blanket weed that appears on the surface, and add appropriate chemical preparation to the water, to avoid the pea soup effect (available from most Garden Centres). Plant aquatics and marginal plants now, deep-water plants until September.