Whatever the weather or time of year there is always something to be done in the garden.
Each month we ask our managers to give us their advice on what we should be looking at at this time of year.
The Kitchen Garden
If the flowers are open first early potatoes are now ready for harvesting. Make repeat sowings of seasonal vegetables to produce a succession of crops. Plant herb pots and gardens, using John Innes compost, and feed monthly with a liquid feed. Plant strawberry plants in rows. Ensure you keep on top of watering – perhaps consider installing a micro irrigation system. Erect canes and strings for peas and beans, and use old buckets to force rhubarb to harvest.
The Water Garden
Pond plants are now coming into season so now is the perfect time to add them to your pond. Divide and repot large established pond plants before they come into growth. You can also add aquatic slow release fertilizer to the plants roots to help growth. Start adding beneficial bacteria treatments and continue to do so regularly throughout the season. It competes with the algae for available nutrients, starving the algae of its food source. As the weather starts to warm up your fish will become more active meaning you can begin to feed them more regularly. Don’t overfeed your fish. Fish food that is not eaten will add more nutrients to the pond, helping feed the algae.
Plant summer containers and hanging baskets. Choose colourful bedding combined with seasonal shrubs for optimum impact. Watch out for greenfly on Roses and Clematis and start regular feeding with a liquid fertilizer for spectacular displays. Secure climbing plants to supports as needed. Feed fading spring bulbs with a general fertilizer to ensure good results next year. Hedges will probably require their first cut of the year. You can prune your spring blooming shrubs just as soon as the flowers have faded. Tub plants and frost-sensitive plants can now be moved outdoors, although you should still beware of night frost!
Weed and feed applications should be made using granules or liquids following the instructions givem. Regular mowing is vital for a bowling green finish. Set up a compost heap for grass cuttings. Consider purchasing a sprinkler and a hose to keep the lawn green in dry spells.
Complete planting of tomatoes and cucumbers in grow bags. Start their feeding with Phostrogen then switch to a specialist tomato feed to bulk up the fruit production. Keep vents open where possible to reduce the risk of a fungal infection.