WHAT TO DO IN JUNE
  • Scatter granular fertiliser around the base of roses, shrubs, perennials and hedges, and water in thoroughly if rain does not fall over the next week.
  • Spray roses to protect them from pests and diseases, organic sprays would be preferable
  • There seems to be a good crop of cherries forming this year so net all your developing soft fruits to protect them from birds
  • You can now cut the foliage of daffodils and tulips down to the ground
  • Tie greenhouse tomatoes to their supports as they grow and feed plants with fertiliser solution once a week
  • Add lawn cuttings to the compost heap, or use them to mulch around fruit trees
  • Mow and edge your lawn
  • Tie stems of tall perennials to supports to prevent wind damage
  • You should be feeding your  houseplants every week with a liquid fertiliser
  • Clean out filters of pond pumps to get rid of any debris
  • Run a 'seeping hose' - a hose with holes in - through dry shaded borders or along the base of hedges so they can be watered weekly in dry weather.
  • Lightly trim broom and genista after flowering to keep plants in shape
  • Trim box topiary and formal edging to keep it neat and tidy
  • Stop cutting asparagus by the end of June to allow the ferns to form
  • Sow veg seeds now. Try rocket, spinach, beetroot, carrots, calabrese, mini-cauliflowers, spinach, chicory, endive, kohl rabi, peas, spinach beet, swede and turnip

Give it a try... A couple of weeks ago a very nice lady dropped me in some information on National Biodiversity week. Biodiversity seems like a complicated word that but it has a simple meaning; the vast diversity of nature which can be seen all around us. Biodiversity is a term that was coined by joining the words “biological” and “diversity”. This contraction is now routinely used to discuss the high number and wide variety of organisms in the world, including humankind. So the grass that you walk on, the tree growing in your back garden, the bees buzzing from flower to flower and the birds flying over your head are all part of the world’s biodiversity. All gardens contribute in some way to the biodiversity of an area. Every plant that is planted increases the variety of life and provides habitat for other plants, animals, insects, fungi and so on. Ireland is lucky enough to have a rich biodiversity across the country, but our modern lifestyles can affect much of this natural variety. The good news is that there is a lot we can do in our own gardens to halt these threats. As long as we all pitch in, are rich biodiversity should continue to flourish. Biodiversity relies upon ecological systems completing and complementing each other. The food chain is the best example I can think of. Soil nurtures plants, plants are eaten by animals, and animals are raised and used by humans for a variety of purposes. If one link of this chain were to go missing the chain would be destroyed. And if one link of this chain were changed, the entire chain would be different. Today there is enough biodiversity to support a multitude of chains, all of which can benefit humans.  Here are some ways to encourage biodiversity in your garden. Plant a tree, preferably native; like a birch or rowan in a small/medium sized garden or an oak or ash in a large garden. Put up bird, ladybird and bat boxes .Leave some areas for grass and wildflowers to grow long. Leave dead wood and leaves lying around for over- wintering insects. Create a pond for aquatic life. Plant berry, fruit and nut producing trees, fruit and nuts for you, blossoms for the bees. 

June