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Jobs For The Month

July.
FLOWERS
1. Cut lavender for drying, choosing newly opened flowers for the best fragrance, then hang up in a cool, dark place
2. Give dahlias a liquid feed, keep them well watered and tie the shoots of tall varieties to sturdy stakes as they grow
3. Hoe and hand-weed borders often, so weeds don't have time to set seed
4. Water and feed sweet peas regularly, pick the flowers every few days, and remove seed pods to prolong flowering
5. Plant autumn bulbs, including nerines, colchicums and sternbergia, in pots and borders
6. Feed, water and deadhead summer bedding regularly, in pots, borders and hanging baskets
7. Cut back early summer perennials, such as hardy geraniums and delphiniums, after flowering for a second flush
8. Take softwood cuttings from shrubs such as pyracantha, cotinus, hydrangeas and spiraea
9. Feed and deadhead roses to keep them flowering strongly
10. Keep watch for pests such as lily beetles, snails, aphids and vine weevils, and remove before they do too much harm
11. Pick off flowers on coleus plants to maintain their colourful leaves
12. Sow biennials, such as foxgloves, honesty, forget-me-nots and wallflowers, for blooms next year
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FRUITS & VEGETABLES
1. Check crops such as runner beans regularly for aphids, and rub or wash them off straight away, before they multiply
2. Water thirsty plants such as celery, beans, peas, courgettes, pumpkins and tomatoes regularly
3. Make the last pickings of rhubarb and remove any flower spikes that start to form, cutting right down at the base
4. Thin out heavy crops of apples, pears and plums, and remove any malformed, damaged or undersized fruits
5. Prune plum trees in dry weather, when silver leaf fungal disease is less prevalent
6. Sow a last batch of peas and dwarf beans before mid-July for an autumn crop
7. Shorten sideshoots growing from the framework of trained fruit trees, reducing to about five leaves from their base
8. Water fruit trees and bushes, then lay a thick mulch of garden compost around their base to hold in moisture
9. Cover brassicas with fine netting to prevent cabbage white butterflies laying their eggs on the leaves
10. Peg down strawberry runners into pots of compost to root new plants
11. Pick courgettes regularly so they don't turn into marrows
12. Sow small batches of fast-maturing salad leaves, rocket and radishes every few weeks for continuous pickings
13. Cut down broad beans after harvesting, but leave the roots in the soil to release nitrogen as they decompose
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IN THE GREENHOUSE
1. Open greenhouse vents and doors on warm days to improve air circulation
2. Continue pinching out any sideshoots growing from the leaf joints of cordon tomatoes
3. Take cuttings from fuchsias, coleus, pelargoniums, marguerites and other tender perennials
4. Water tomatoes daily to prevent drying out, which can lead to split fruits and blossom end rot
5. Order cold-stored potato tubers for planting in a greenhouse or cool porch next month, to harvest at Christmas
6. Take large-leaved houseplants into the garden and hose them down to clean off accumulated dust
7. Damp down the greenhouse floor each morning on hot days to increase humidity
8. Be vigilant for aphids, vine weevils and other pests, and treat immediately so infestations don't get out of hand
9. Take leaf cuttings from houseplants including Begonia rex, African violets, Cape primroses, crassula and kalanchoe
10. Feed tomatoes, chillies and cucumbers with high-potash tomato fertiliser every week to encourage fruiting
11. Install a reservoir watering system, so thirsty plants such as tomatoes don't dry out
12. Regularly sweep greenhouse staging and floors to reduce debris that can harbour pests and diseases
13. Train the main stem of cucumbers up supports and pinch out sideshoots two leaves after a flower or fruit
14. Feed houseplants weekly until autumn to keep them in peak condition
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AROUND THE GARDEN
1. Compost your kitchen and garden waste, chopping up and mixing the contents to speed up decomposition
2. Top up bird baths, ponds and water features during hot weather
3. Water new trees, shrubs and perennials planted in spring, to help them through dry spells
4. Trim conifers and other garden hedges
5. Scoop out any floating pondweed and algae from pools and water features
6. Keep mowing lawns regularly, but raise the cutting height to leave the grass longer during dry weather
7. Water hanging baskets and patio containers daily, in the morning or evening
8. Deadhead bedding plants, sweet peas and annuals every few days to encourage more flowers
9. Set up an automatic watering system to look after greenhouse crops, pots and baskets if you're going on holiday
10. Make your own liquid feed from comfrey plants
11. Apply tomato feed fortnightly to crops in pots and growing bags, such as tomatoes and chillies, to encourage fruiting
12. Trim lavender after flowering to keep plants compact and bushy, but avoid cutting into old wood
13. Be on the lookout for developing pest problems and take action straight away
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All above information from http://www.gardenersworld.com/what-to-do-now/ & are in no way based on our current stock.
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