MUST dos in the garden this month
- Feed, water and deadhead summer-flowering annuals that have been established.
- Hydrangeas are a November-favourite and are easy to grow in areas with morning sun and afternoon shade. They do however drink a lot of water.
- Maintain a good layer of mulch around your trees, shrubs and subshrubs - summer's heat is on its way! Not sure how to mulch? Dig into the article below.
- Give your lawn and fast-growing plants a good feed. Remember to water well before and after fertilising.
- Remove the last spring flowers that are past their best and add to the compost.
Collect and store seeds
Collecting and storing seeds gives you the opportunity to inexpensively increase the plants in your garden and allows you to delay sowing until a more suitable time when conditions are favourable for germination. By collecting and storing seeds this year, you can already look forward to your garden in the next. Follow this easy guide to show you exactly how to grow your favourite plants again, and again, and again.
- Lift and store spring-flowering bulbs that have withered and turned yellow.
- Divide irises and primroses that have ceased flowering.
- Pinch out growing tips of Chrysanthemums.
- Remember to propagate autumn-flowering Michaelmas daisies and Rudbeckias for planting out early next year.
- Keep feeding and deadheading your roses to encourage new growth for a flush in January.
- Prune water shoots.
- Regularly spray against fungal diseases.
- Feed your roses with a handful of 8:1:5 fertiliser and water slowly and deeply.
- Maintain a good layer of mulch, especially with summer's heat on its way.
- Frequently feed and water leafy veggies, like spinach and salads, to ensure healthy growth and pest-resistance. Plant companions, such as chives and rosemary, in your veggie patch, to repel pests.
- Plant pumpkins! Along with all pumpkin types, you can also sow seeds of climbing beans, French beans, sweetcorn, mealies, and melons.
- Keep on top of weeding to ensure that your edible plants are not competing for resources with weeds.
- Mulch and stake tomatoes and apply organic fertilizer when fruit starts to set.
- Pinch out the tips of runner beans that have reached the top of their support.
- Give eggplants and peppers a high nitrogen feed to encourage growth.
- Plant seedlings of warm-season lettuce and parsley, and sow a few rows of carrots and beetroot.
- Make regular small plantings of beans, sweet corn, baby marrows and other squash varieties.
- It’s berry season! Plant blueberries, raspberries and gooseberries in containers or in the veggie garden, and feed with a slow-release fertiliser. Water regularly!
- Some nectarine and plum varieties will be ready for harvest this month!
- Feed banana and pawpaw trees and maintain a regular watering programme for avocados, especially in dry weather.
Indoor plant care
- Plant tuberous begonias and gloxinia tubers for a beautiful indoor display.
- Feed Streptocarpus and tidy up the leaves.
- Give all your smooth-leaved houseplants a freshen up by wiping them down with a wet sponge and a droplet of apple cider vinegar to remove hard-water stains.
Pests and diseases to look out for
- Beware the beetles! The yellow-and-black CMR and fruit chafer beetle are dominating air traffic once again, devouring flowers and fruits. You can catch them by hand and drown them in oily water, or alternatively, invite Red-winged starlings and Hadeda ibises to your garden for a delicious beetle-buffet.
- Splash bait for fruit flies and coddling moth and reapply after rains.
- Spray vines against fungus if they are prone to downy or powdery mildew.
- Keep an eye out for scale on citrus trees. Also, you might notice the orange dog caterpillar munching on the citrus leaves. Learn more about these beautiful butterflies in the article below.