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Get your garden holiday-ready

All Areas > Homes & Gardens > In the Garden

Author: Julia Smith, Posted: Monday, 25th June 2018, 09:00

July in your garden, what a joy! Hopefully all your hard work is paying off and you can sit in your lounger, sipping a Pimms and reflect on your beautiful handiwork!

If you’re off on holiday this month, you need to decide how your garden will cope whilst you are away. Anyone who has lots of pots and hanging baskets really needs to install an automatic watering system, as it is a lot to ask a neighbour to spend hours watering every night!

Check the long-range weather forecast

You could move the pots into the shade in a group, cover with shade netting (available in garden centres), which stops water evaporation, and stand in a container to collect any rain that falls. This system is fine until it rains solidly for two weeks and the plants are rim deep in water, so check the long-range weather forecast!

Cut the lawn just before you go so you don’t come back to a jungle, and if your neighbours can’t be persuaded to come in and pick your beans, courgettes, sweetpeas, and dahlias you should remove all the pods/buds you can so that they don’t set seed and stop producing.

Keep sowing ‘cut and come’ varieties

If you have grown early potatoes they should be ready to lift now. Keep sowing ‘cut and come again’ varieties of lettuce in small batches in old mushroom boxes, etc. They need to be placed out of the hot sun and kept moist but not soaking. These can be kept by the kitchen door and snipped at for sandwich fillings and salad bowls. Do the same with peas, as pea shoots are really tasty in a salad and they grow easily in containers.

If you notice little metallic beetles on your rosemary, you should pick them off and destroy them. Alternatively, you could put some newspaper underneath the plant and shake the branches to make them drop off. The rosemary beetle can do lots of damage to the plant if they are in large numbers so keep removing them.

The National Garden Scheme

I can’t leave the July column without extolling the virtues of the National Garden Scheme. These schemes are a wonderful day out, particularly when a whole village takes part. It is lovely to saunter around someone else’s garden to get ideas on planting partners and hopefully a lovely bit of homemade cake! Check www.ngs.org.uk to see where is available in your local area.

Other Images

The rosemary beetle

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