Preparing Your Garden For Summer

It’s safe to say I got a little too excited by announcing Spring was here in our March blog!  Snow is still falling in some parts of the country and as I write this, it’s just a mere 2 degrees. On the same day last year it was in the early 20’s. 

April is an exciting time in the garden; warmer soil and April showers bring ideal growing conditions for our plants. Whilst your perennials may not start flowering, you can most definitely see a daily change in your beds or pots. Shrubs getting taller and thicker with leaves and buds appearing on trees and wildlife returning.

April Gardening Tips:

 

Dead Heading

March and April see the bloom of shrubs and flowers such as Camellias and daffodils. In order to ensure a longer, fuller bloom next year make sure you start dead heading. Once you see the flowers start to turn, take your secateurs and carefully snip each one at the base of the flower/top of the stem. This will help focus the plants energy on the remaining healthy flowers and also help it to prepare for next year. This tip generally applies to most of your garden throughout the year. 

Sow Some Seeds

Hardy annuals simply are the annual flowers that are the most cold and frost resistant. Try Marigolds, Sweet Pea or Pansies. These plants will always do better being planted in beds and borders rather than pots. This is due to the amount of soil surrounding the roots. The more soil, the warmer the roots will be.

Lawn Care

Although I have mentioned lawn care in previous editions, it really is important to spend time caring for your lawn to help it to look it’s best and survive a long hot summer (British weather depending). Did you know that your lawn can lose up to 25% of its coverage each year! Remember to aerate, weed and top dress your lawn. When mowing, start at a high setting and gradually move down.

Flowers of the Month:

Peacock Orchid

 These perennials come in packets of bulbs and are common in garden centres. Expect to pay a couple of pounds for a pack of 20. These highly fragrant flowers grow up to 90cm tall and are great for providing height in your beds. Flowering from July to November, you get a decent return in terms of bloom time. Very easy to grow in well drained soil, fertilised soil. Get them planted in April for best results.

Sunflowers

I look at sunflowers and see something fun! Great to grow with kids and get them into gardening. For best results, start in April and sow a few seeds every couple of weeks. These can take anywhere from 11-18 weeks to start appearing. By doing this, you will see a healthy batch that keep coming throughout the summer and autumn. There are many different types of sunflowers which range from 50cm to 3 meters. If you are going to have a family competition, try not to cheat and give yourself the taller variety!!

 

Job of the Month:

The team of Chris and Leon completed this small new build, garden design transformation in February this year. However, we needed to wait until last week for the planting to come into stock. 

The team split the levels and created a step using softwood sleepers. Constructed a pergola area and trellis screening area using treated timber and laid raj blend sandstone. We finished off the other areas using Cotswold self binding gravel. This is laid on top of a weed suppressive membrane and planted through. 

The planting here is a mixture of grasses, cotton lavender and achillea to provide height and alpines called Saxifraga which are creepers and will grow to be a bed of green with white flowers. We also planted up the sleeper beds with a mixture of summer bulbs such as Dalia’s and Peacock Orchids. 

Looking forward to popping back in a few months to see the garden come to life. 

 

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