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28 June 2013

July Gardening Tasks

Now that July has arrived, temperatures should have risen, so you should be able to sit out in your garden and admire the fruits of your work from previous months. July is mainly about looking after what is already flowering and keeping your garden looking it's best, so here are twenty tasks for you to consider.

1) Keep deadheading bedding plants and perennials to prolong flowering.

2) Provide support for any tall-growing plants, such as gladioli and delphiniums, that you didn't stake earlier, to help them look their best.

3) Cut back hard early-flowering perennials so they will send up fresh leaves and perhaps some late-summer flowers. Feed them after pruning.

4) Where grown in soil of low fertility, apply a quick-acting feed to late-flowering border perennials before they flower.

5) Prune June-flowering shrubs such as philadelphus and weigela after flowering.

6) Tie in climbing plants as required.

7) Pick sweet peas regularly to encourage continued flowering.

8) Ensure that any newly-planted shrubs and trees are kept well-watered. Surrounding them with a good layer of mulch will help to keep in moisture.

9) Weeds will be active through July and will need removing, either by digging them out or by chemical means. A good, thick layer of mulch will help to keep weeds down.

10) Container plants will need to be kept well-watered and given a regular application of liquid feed.

11) Perk up your hanging basket displays by cutting back the plants and then feeding them.

12) On hot days remember to damp down your greenhouse.

13) In dry periods leave your grass a little bit longer to help it to stay green and retain moisture. If your lawn turns brown during a prolonged dry period, it will soon turn green again when the rain comes. Don't waste water by using a sprinkler.

14) If you didn't feed your lawn in the spring, give it a helping of quick-acting summer feed.

15) Conservatory plants can be left outside now that the temperature has risen.

16) Plant autumn-flowering bulbs such as amaryllis, sternbergia and autumn crocuses.

17) Start taking cuttings of container plants, such as fuchsias and pelargoniums, which can be grown on in the greenhouse.

18) Take half-ripe cuttings of shrubs such as cistus, lavatera, viburnum and hydrangeas.

19) Start collecting seeds for next year from plants such as poppies and calendula.

20) Plan ahead by ordering your catalogue of spring-flowering bulbs. You may find it helpful to mark on a plan where you want them to go.

Despite all these jobs make sure you give yourself time to sit and enjoy your garden while it is looking it's best.

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