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June 27, 2016

Reap the Rewards: Your Summer Garden

Reap the Rewards: Your Summer Garden

A rhododendron deli. Image courtesy of RBG Kew.

A flourishing and vibrant garden is most coveted in the warmer months. Property & Home shares top tips to keep your garden blooming.

Gardening is one of our biggest hobbies, with 75 percent of Britons doing some kind of green-fingered activity from cultivating a piece of land to taking care of a small plant on a balcony. Not only can the final result look idyllic, it can also be incredibly rewarding to nurture your own blossoming garden

Hoe down

The warmer, lighter months encourages a growth spurt in the garden, making it the perfect time for flowers: colour co-ordinated perennials, multi-coloured bedding plants from hanging baskets, or the favourite summer shrub, the rose.
These conditions are also favoured by weeds, and persistently will sprout up. Hoe borders regularly in dry conditions to keep weed invasions down.

Sow now, reap later

By August, the gardening year is nearly over. However, there are a number of vegetables that can be grown without any problems in now-vacated patches. These vegetables include radishes, lettuce, rocket, winter onions, early potatoes and spinach. Use mulch between rows or vegetables to prevent weed growth, and don’t grow the members of the same vegetable family year after year in one plot. Instead, rotate your crops to encourage nutrients in the soil.

See also: Make your Garden Greener

Pest control

If aphids pester your flowers, master gardener Paul James has an interesting technique: ‘you can control them with a strong blast of water from the hose or with insecticidal soap. But here's another suggestion, one that's a lot more fun; get some tape! Wrap a wide strip of tape around your hand, sticky side out, and pat the leaves of plants infested with aphids. Concentrate on the undersides of leaves.’ [Source: HGTV.com]

Thirst Quenching

Don’t water your garden in the middle of the day, as the moisture will evaporate. Watering in early morning is the best choice as the plants are provided with a supply of water to face the heat of the day, and early mornings tend to have less wind and therefore reduced evaporation. If early morning watering can’t be done, very late afternoon or evening is also advisable.

See also: Chic Garden Decor

Love your Lawn

Mow your lawn at least once a week, and frequently move garden furniture to allow grass to recover and prevent yellow patches. Make sure new lawns (either from turf or seed) do not dry out during hot weather, as turfs will shrink if dried out and will fail to knit together.

Protect the Pollinators
Pollinating insects are vital for any garden. If your vegetable and fruit plants are failing to produce, your plants might be lacking pollinators. All plants require pollination to be able to produce, and occasionally interference from Mother Nature or gardeners can be detrimental—not just to your own garden, but to global agriculture.

Bees and butterflies are especially significant in this pollination process, and there are methods to attract them to your garden:

Arrange your plants in clumps where possible so pollinators can find them easily. Also aim to choose plants that are native to your region so that they will be more accustomed to the climate, soil and types of pollinators. Your local garden centre, or even your local park, will indicate which plants will grow well in your area. 

Limit your use of pesticides in the garden. They can be harmful to bees, so should be avoided as much as possible. If using pesticides can’t be avoided, choose products that are less toxic and apply only at night when bees and other pollinators are not as active.

See also: Roof Garden: The New Eco Trend