Gardening in March

This is a great month to have a blitz on the garden if not yet done in February! Numerous bulbs are flowering now and many trees and shrubs are cheering us up with their beautiful spring blooms.

There will probably be old, dried-up foliage that died off in the autumn from your perennials (plants that come back year on year) covering many of your beds; March is a good month to get rid of this so new growth can happen unhindered.

Weed seedlings are starting to grow and unless dealt with now they will cause problems later.

Now is a perfect time to feed and mulch the beds with organic compost, which will feed the roots and keep the moisture in.

If you’ve been thinking about making some bigger changes like a new patio, some decking or a pond now is the time to start your planning in earnest to ensure you’ll be ready to enjoy the fruits of your labour in the summer.

Growing your own

If you’re keen on growing your own vegetables and fruit March is a key time for sowing both inside and out.

Maintenance

  • If not done in February prune your roses. Always prune no more than 5mm above a bud and do a diagonal cut so water won’t collect on the bud.
  • Trim back silvery and evergreen shrubs such as Lavender to keep them bushy.
  • Lightly fork over borders to aerate and weed then cover with approximately 3-5cm of organic compost/mulch.
  • Aerate your lawn by pushing a fork in 10cm deep and 20cm apart or hire an aerator. This helps air, water and nutrients penetrate the lawn more easily.
  • You can mow for the first time this year but not too short initially. If your first cut is too short you risk traumatising the grass and it may not grow back as strong.
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Gardening in April

The growing season is really underway this month, with plants seemingly coming out of nowhere to burst into life, especially your perennial plants (that grow back year after year). Suddenly winter seems a long way away as so many shrubs, trees and bulbs are in full bloom.

Weeds are also making the best of all the daylight and warmth, so keep hoeing or hand weeding the borders to keep them in check.

Start feeding the lawn this month and apply lawn sand if moss is a problem. Birds will be nesting now so be careful when trimming hedges and bushes, try leaving it till May/June if so.

Get started on any bigger garden projects (Patios, Decking, raised beds etc) in April. Not only is the weather hopefully a little better but the ground will be softer if your project involves digging. Plus doing the grafting now will mean you can enjoy some of the early summer sun in May, if we get any!

Growing your own

April is a key month for planting veg ready for the summer.

Maintenance

  • Dead-head faded flowers from shrubs. Dead-heads are the dead flowers that will be on many shrubs in your garden. You can just pinch the deadheads off with your fingers of if you use secateurs cut back to the next leaf or bud down the stalk. Cut at a diagonal so moisture can run off.
  • Keep on top of weeding by hoeing bare ground.
  • If not done already feed borders with organic fertilizer.
  • If not done in March you can give the lawn a first mow but not too short initially. If your first cut is too short you risk traumatising the grass and it may not grow back as strong.
  • Sow grass seed to repair lawns.
  • Check and repair any fencing or garden structures such as pergolas or arbours.
  • Clean decking.
  • Treat decking, fences and sheds with wood preservative.
  • Jet wash or scrub patios and paths to remove algae.
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Gardening in May

This month is probably the most colourful of all with many shrubs and perennial flowers looking their best.

Grass will be growing quickly now so regular mowing is now essential to keep the lawn looking its best.

Hedge trimming can start now but check for birds’ nests first.

May is also a good time to plant hanging baskets with bedding plants.

Hopefully you will be well on the way or finished with any larger garden projects such as patios, decking or ponds.

Growing your own

May is an active planting and harvesting month so you should be able to start enjoying some of your home grown efforts.

Maintenance

  • Tie in any climbing plants to keep them in order.
  • Weekly mowing can start in earnest now
  • If not already done in April now is a good time to scrub or pressure wash any patios and paths to remove algae
  • Clean decking if not done in April.
  • Check and repair any fencing or garden structures such as pergolas or arbours.
  • Treat decking, fences and sheds with wood preservative if not done in April.
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