June – my favourite month! What is yours? Gardens are bulking up and the flowers will be blooming abundantly throughout the month. There is so much competition for colour, fragrance and form in gardens right now. At this time of the year roses, perennials, annuals and hardy annuals are so fresh and, well…just beautiful.
With the weather warming, it’s tempting to sit back and just enjoy the visual feast that a garden, no matter how small, can offer. But to look its best throughout the summer, it needs some TLC. From now on, your gorgeous plants risk being attacked by pests and disease so extra vigilance is needed!
Here are a few beauties that you will find in many gardens, from June onwards.
- Plant up containers and hanging baskets
- Trim any ‘leggy’ plants in your hanging baskets to encourage bushy growth
- Water pots diligently as the weather warms up, they will dry out much faster than plants in the ground.
- Feed plants regularly.
- Plant out tender summer bedding.
- Dahlias can also be planted out now, for late-summer and autumn colour.
- Continue to stake tall plants and tie in climbers such as Clematis.
- Fill gaps in the borders with annual bedding plants such as Salvia, or, if you need something tall and airy, try Verbena bonariensis.
- Deadhead flowers to ensure that you get a second flowering throughout the season.
- There’s still time to sow some hardy annuals.
- Check lupins for aphids – if you don’t spot and treat these immediately your lupins will very quickly wilt.
- Regularly dead-head roses if they are repeat flowering.
Salad, Fruit, Herb and Vegetable Garden
- Direct sow leeks now to harvest in the winter
- Direct sow brassicas such as cauliflower, cabbage, kale, broccoli, brussels sprouts.
- Continue to sow lettuce, carrots, runner beans, dwarf French beans, radish…and much more.
- Pinch out tomato side shoots.
- Cover strawberries and other fruits with netting to protect the fruits from birds.
- Water strawberries to encourage the fruits to swell.
- To keep vegetable beds free of weeds, hoe regularly.
Buying plants online
One of the big advantages of buying plants online is that you will normally have a much bigger selection than you will get at your local garden centre. Prices can also be very competitive as online retailers don’t have the overheads of a physical store.
There are disadvantages of course, in most cases you will have a delivery charge, but if you can offset this against the cost of travel to your nearest garden centre, it can make it a more attractive option.
In favour of your local garden centre, they will normally only supply plants that are known to grow in your area, so your chances of buying tender, tropical plants when you live in a cold, windy part of the country are remote. Then of course, there’s the enjoyment factor to consider – who doesn’t love browsing round the delights of a garden centre and perhaps having lunch with family or like-minded friends!
If you don’t know the company you are buying from, you might also be wary of the quality of the plants that you might receive.
Over the years I’ve bought from a good number of online sites, and have happily settled for a few that I know deliver top quality plants. One is David Austin Roses, though most garden centres do stock a good selection of David Austin roses. I would only buy roses online if I couldn’t get a particular variety, (such as Valentine Heart – OK I’m drooling over this one!) in the garden centre.
Cut and Come Again Flowers
The seedlings (shown above from Sarah Raven) are ‘cut and come again’ hardy annuals for cutting. The more you cut, the more you get. I’ve taken the easy route here, as the plants have been bought as a collection, all designed to work well with one another. In theory, they should look good in pots in the garden, and also in vases around the house.
Growing hardy annuals for cutting is new to me, and whether I’ll be successful in growing them, remains to be seen! I’ll keep you posted on this one. 🙂
Even if you don’t have a garden, you can grow hardy annuals for cutting, in pots. Why not try one or two pots this year, just for cutting. There’s still time! Now take a look at what you could do with all those flowers:
Watch Sarah Raven create a Hand Tied Bunch of Flowers
Although the final arrangement is fabulous – I LOVED the foliage version before the flowers went in. What do you think?
This month, enjoy your garden, the park or the beautiful countryside that we have in this part of the world!