David Hurrion’s July Tips

David Hurrion’s July Tips

Award winning Garden writer David Hurrion’s top tips for July

  • Water pots and containers daily in hot, dry weather making sure that you give them a good soaking to get down to the roots of the plants.
  • Feed bedding plants twice a week using a high-potash liquid feed such as tomato fertiliser to encourage the production of more flower buds and to toughen up the foliage making the plants more resistant to pests and diseases.
  • Tie in the growth of climbing plants using soft string. Knot the string onto the support first, then wrap around the stem and loosely tie it in place so as not to cause damage.
  • Remove the faded blooms from all flowering plants to keep them looking good and to channel energy into further flower production rather than setting seed. Deadhead using scissors, snips or pinch out using your finger and thumb.
  • Plant out cabbage, cauliflower and Brussels sprout plants for a harvest during the winter. Firm plants thoroughly using the heel of your boot after planting.
  • Cover fruit bushes with netting to exclude birds which would steal your crop. Check the netting daily to release any feathered friends that have found their way in and become trapped.
  • Sow seed of foxgloves onto the surface of seed trays filled with multi-purpose compost. The seed will germinate quickly and can be planted out in autumn ready to flower next spring.
  • Grow salad leaves in large pots of compost to provide fresh, home-grown pickings for the rest of the summer and on into early autumn. Sow seed on the surface and cover with a fine layer of compost. Position your pot in a sunny spot, water 2-3 times a week and you’ll be able to start picking the outer leaves in around 14 days.
  • Scoop out blanket weed from ponds to stop it choking other aquatic plants and pond life. Use a bamboo cane to twirl it from the water, or a rake to dredge out the fine green filaments.
  • Pick beans regularly while they are tender and before they become ‘stringy’. This will promote more flowers and beans to form. Harvest your crop first thing in the morning, when the plants are full of moisture and the beans firm and fresh.
  • Cut out the flowered stems of rambling roses as soon as the blooms fade. Prune out the older stems back as low as possible, leaving the strongest new, green shoots to train back into their supports. These will carry next year’s flowers.

See the July issue of BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine filled with inspiring ideas for your garden as well as reminders of other jobs to do this month.