Welcome to “Gardening Tips and Advice” on Boyletoday.com, the official Ardcarne Garden Centre gardening column. Every Wednesday, the experts in your local Ardcarne Garden Centre will provide relevant and topical items of interest exclusively here on Boyletoday.com to help you get the best from your garden.
Great to do now:
Job of the week: Mow the lawn
Getting behind the lawnmower every week is a regular task now as the grass is growing fast. Regular mowing is by far the best way to guarantee a good quality lawn: keep the grass about 2.5-4cm long throughout the season to encourage lots of strong, thick growth to crowd out weeds and moss, and you’ll also get a finer-leaved, luxury texture.
* Harden off summer bedding plants ready to go outside
* Thin out annual flowers sown direct last months
* Repot spring primroses and polyanthus and save for next year
Fruit & Veg
Sow climbing beans direct, but protect seeds from mice with holly prunings
* Keep horticultural fleece handy to throw over new potatoes in case of late frost
* Harvest asparagus spears, cutting just below soil level with a sharp knife
* Open doors and windows to ventilate on warm days
* Install automatic drip irrigation to take the worry out of watering
* Patrol daily on the lookout for pests and squash on sight
* Keep on top of watering, soaking thoroughly once a week
* Give formal hedging such as box a light trim to keep it smart
* Watch out for aphids primarily on the underside of young beech hedging and treat straight away. Also check box plants for aphids
Focus on… Planting a Hanging Basket
Have all your materials ready before planting . You will need a basket, liner, compost and plants. Choose a selection of upright and trailing plants. Here are some suggestions.
Upright – Geranium, Tuberous Begonia, Upright Fuchsia, Marguerite Daisy, Osteospermum, Marigold, Busy Lizzies, Nemesia, Dahlia, Cosmos, Dianthus etc.
Trailing – Surfinia Petunia, Lobelia, Trailing Begonia, Fuchsia, Bacopa, Bidens, Diascia, Glechoma, Brachyscome, Verbena, Lysimachia, helichrysum etc.
Rest your basket into an empty flower pot to make it stable while planting.
Put in the basket liner (put the mossy side facing out).
Half fill the basket with compost, and then at this level, cut three small slits in the liner, evenly spaced around the sides of the basket. (Some liners have the slits pre-cut in the sides)
Ensure all the plants are adequately moist and then select three small trailers such as trailing lobelia, to tuck into the three holes. Gently push the stems of the plants through the holes to the outside of the basket.
With the three trailing plants in position, add more compost to fill the basket almost to the top. Firm gently around the roots as you fill.
Select your upright-growing plants for the top of the basket and plant them in the centre. The remaining trailing plants can then be simply tucked around the edge. Now all you have to do is water the basket and place in position on a secure wall bracket.
Protect from late frost
If you plant your basket before the end of May, you may need to protect your plants from a late frost. Either bring the whole basket inside the house at night or cover with Frost Protection Fleece.
Baskets dry out very quickly so you’ll need to water every day in dry weather. Even one day without water can mean your plants will never fully recover. Water in the morning or evening to allow the plants time to soak it up before the heat of the day.
Feed every two weeks with a liquid fertiliser such as Tomato Feed, to ensure your basket is a waterfall of colour all through the summer.
For more information contact:
Ardcarne Garden Centre
Boyle, Tel: 07196 67091
Roscommon Town: Tel: 09066 27700
Email: [email protected]
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