Your Garden In JULY
YOUR GARDEN IN JULY
Often one of the hottest months of year, July is also a time when your garden will be packed full of colour and looking at its best. There are one or two routine jobs to be doing but the most important thing is to make sure you have plenty of time to enjoy your garden. You've worked hard to achieve this, so take some time to sit back and appreciate the view!
In between the relaxing, though, there are still some gentle jobs to be done and it goes without saying that sunscreen and a hat should be worn if you're out in your garden for any prolonged length of time. First of all, the watering. We never know what the weather will have in store for us and, if there are no showers to refresh your borders, you will have to water them yourself, as well as regularly watering any containers and hanging baskets. Add some liquid feed to these too to give them an extra boost.
I can't reiterate enough the benefits of a water butt. If you don't already have one, please install one if at all possible. If you do already have one, perhaps you could consider whether you have room to add another! If there is a drought and a subsequent hosepipe ban, you will truly cherish the contents of your water butt.
There will be so many gorgeous flowers in your garden just now and it's vital to keep deadheading faded blooms in borders and containers to prolong the flowering period. If perennials like hardy geraniums and Salvia appear to have finished, it's worth cutting them right back to promote lush new green growth and even maybe a second flush of flowers.
Your roses are probably looking fabulous now but remember to keep checking them closely and, if necessary, spray them to get rid of green fly, white fly and black spot. This will help to maintain healthy growth not just now but throughout the year. Talking of healthy growth, your lawn will also benefit from a liquid feed now, especially if you didn't have time to feed it in the spring.
Herbaceous perennials are among the real stars of the July garden. Echinacea, Coreopsis, Helenium, Heliopsis and Verbena bonariensis will all be looking magnificent now. Combine these with the contrasting style of grasses, such as Stipa and Pennisetum, and you'll create a prairie look which is very effective.
Rudbeckias are also perfect for such a display. One of my particular favourites is Rudbeckia fulgida 'Little Goldstar', whose compact shape looks great in a border or a container. It loves full sun and its plentiful, bright yellow, daisy-like flowers attract bees. It's a summer sensation which will flower right through to autumn, what a star!
JULY ON THE VEG PLOT
It's getting late in the season for sowing but there are still a few to try. Dwarf French beans, Florence fennel, and early carrots all germinate quickly in the warm soil and provide later pickings, until the frosts and even up to Christmas.
Plant out kale started last month. These seedlings can be planted deep and need to be well firmed in. They stand all winter getting blown about so need a sturdy base. If you missed sowing them, you should find plants at the garden centre ready to go.
Finally, hot weather or not, here are my top tips for wise watering on the allotment:
To reduce evaporation, water in the cooler parts of the day, mornings or evenings.
Water the soil at the base of the plant, not over the plants, so that all the water goes into the soil to the roots.
Pre-water drills and planting holes, when sowing and planting. This will encourage the plants roots to search down for water.
Mulch around plants to retain moisture.
Ensure everywhere is weed free to prevent weeds competing for any water.
Thanks to Will from https://www.bartongrange.co.uk/plants-and-gardening/gardening-advice/