A U G U S T \ Gardening To Do’s

August brings a close to the summer months, although tends to be the hottest of them all making watering essential. Here are 8 top jobs that can be done this month:

[1] Water your garden thoroughly, at least twice a week, early in the morning or in late afternoons to prevent leaf scorch during the hottest hours.

[2] The big harvest is in full swing. Get the butter ready for those fresh succulent sweetcorn cobs as they become ready for picking. Once summer fruiting raspberry canes have finished producing, cut them back to ground level. New canes should already be appearing which you can begin grading out and tying into supports for next year.

[3] Prune back lavender once it has finished flowering to keep plants compact. At the same time cut back any perennials that have also finished flowering such as Dicentra. A few may even give you a second autumn flush of colour.

[4] Yet again keep on keeping on with that weeding and deadheading. This will encourage your plants, in particular Dahlia’s and Roses, to keep flowering well into the Autumn extending the life of your garden.

[5] Now is the time to give those Wisteria their second prune of the year. A summer prune will allow air and sunlight in and encourage a stronger display next year. After flowering, cut back wispy new green growth down to 5 leaves per stem. This will help control the size of your Wisteria and encourage those stems to focus on producing flower buds as opposed to new stem growth.

[6] It’s time to start thinking ahead to next year and what you want to grow. Strawberries will be sending out new runner plants, so lift and pot them to create new plants for next year. Generally Strawberries will peak in their 3rd year, producing their biggest and best fruit so it pays to replace them with fresh younger plants. Sow spring cabbages in the veg patch. Gather the seeds of annuals such as Aquilegia’s, Nigella and Poppies for sowing in the Spring.

[7] Give garden hedges a good trim and tidy.

[8] If you’ve an abundance of veg and fruits then dig out some old jars and dust of those preserve cookery books. Who doesn’t love jam in their scones or chutney with their cheeses? Preserving is there for you to use up that excess produce and you can’t beat the flavour of homemade. They make great gifts too!