TIPS AND TRICKS FOR YOUR GARDEN IN MAY
  • Plant out dahlias into well-prepared soil that's been enriched with manure.
  • Clip box hedging and topiary.
  • Regularly tie in tall stems of delphiniums to supports to stop them flopping over.
  • Plant out crops being raised under glass, such as courgettes and tomatoes.
  • Sow seeds of salad leaves every two to three weeks to ensure a regular supply.
  • Sow seeds of dwarf beans and climbing beans alongside canes, plant the poached egg plant along side to help keep away the black fly that seems to love all manner of beans.
  • Check plants regularly for signs of pests.
  • Feed lawns now with a long lasting feed.
  • Cut down pulmonarias to just above soil level after flowering to encourage new foliage.
  • Feed fast-growing plants with a diluted liquid or powdered fertiliser.
  • Build simple log piles at the back of borders to provide shelter for frogs, toads, hedgehogs, beetles and other pest-eating wildlife.

Give it a try.. plant your vegetables now, they’ll grow! Now is the perfect time, the ground is heating up and the forecast is good. Most roots vegetables can still successfully be grown from seed. As a matter a fact you can still sow potatoes, there is an old saying “if you can see through an Ash tree, you can still sow potatoes”. Cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower etc. are best sown from plants at this stage rather than seed. If you haven’t planted vegetables before start small, prepare the ground well ie dig in some compost and some organic fertilizer and throughout just keep an eye out for slugs and hopefully dry spells. If you don’t have green fingers start off with salad leaves, spring onions, beetroot and radishes. Enjoy the salad and remember practice makes perfect.

It’s time to colour your patio. Summer is on the way, so it’s time to plant up your hanging baskets, window boxes and tubs. Basic principles for successful container planting are as follows; knowing which plants like sun or shade, whether they like wet or dry conditions and whether they grow upright or trail down. Once you have chosen the plants compatible to your situation your next consideration is colour combination. There are no strict rules in relation to this as you can put pink, red and orange in a hanging baskets and it will look great. The colour of the pot and the colour of your house should be taken into account, however, red geraniums against light coloured walls look very well, whereas yellow is quite good with a brick background. To get the best from your arrangements always choose good quality fresh plants as I find plants that may have dried out and look a bit sad, stay sad for a long time!  Always use good quality compost, never plant into last season’s compost as the results will not be good. Some summer bedding plants are easier to maintain than others, if your planting containers for a loved one's grave, you may not get to visit it every second day to water it, so choose plants with a low water requirement such as Geraniums, Alyssum, Cineria and any plant with a silvery grey foliage. You can also add water retaining crystals to the compost which reduces the need to water by up to 50%. I have come across a little name plant Heliotropium ‘Cherry Pie’ which makes the perfect centrepiece for containers, it’s royal blue , scented and goes with most colour schemes

May