Garden Tasks for May

Garden Tasks for May

Hopefully you have had a chance to spend some time in the garden in the past month.  It has definitely been the perfect weather to be out working in the garden.

I will be planting my spring bulbs soon as mentioned in the last newsletter here is a guide to growing spring bulbs on my blog.  Link here

In the veggie garden continue with succession planting of your cool season/winter vegetables such as beetroot, regular peas, snow peas, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, broad beans, carrots, sugar snap peas, chives, leek, salad greens, swede, turnip, parsnip, onions and radish

In the cutting garden our dahlias are finishing flowering however the zinnias are still providing lots of blooms.  I need to make plans for how to dig, divide and store our dahlias. There will be an article in next months newsletter on how we are going to do this. Plant out some winter flowering plants such as poppies, calendula, pansy, cineraria, chrysanthemums and lobelia 

Feed all garden beds with an organic pellet fertiliser. We are using Neutrog’s Seamungus. Remember to water fertiliser in well. Mulch all beds after fertilising. Giving the beds a blanket of mulch now will help protect plants from frost damage, suppress weed growth and prepare them for the start of spring. If you do have lots of fallen deciduous leaves don’t forget you can use these as mulch ideally, compost these first (see article link above for more details).

Start preparing any garden areas where you plan on planting out bare rooted trees and roses. Dig through organic garden compost or composted animal manure to build up the soil.

Start making plans or even get started on dividing any perennials such as agapanthus, sedums, salvias, ornamental grasses, day lilies. As a general guide any spring or summer flowering perennials can be divided in autumn. For some plants they maybe still flowering so make sure they are finished before dividing. Ideally, division should happen just before the ground gets too cold or if you are in a snow zone before the ground freezes.

Install frost protection (physical barrier) around any frost tender plants. As an alternative to a physical barrier you could also try a combination of a good layer of mulch, treat regularly with a seaweed emulsion such as Eco Seaweed and water well the day before you know there will be a heavy frost.

After showers of rain take the opportunity of the soft soil to pull any weeds out.

Cut back or dead head flowering shrubs.

Take a note of any dead branches in larger trees that could be removed in coming months. You can even snap a photo of your deciduous trees now so when it comes to pruning you know where the dead branches are.

Get on top of lawn edges and any “wilder sections” of grass or pasture growth. With the cooler season most grasses will slow in growth so trying to pull these sections of the garden back into shape they will last longer with the cooler weather.

If you grow citrus be aware of fruit fly and bronze orange bugs (stink bugs). If you notice any signs of fruit fly you will need to start treatment.

Now is a good time to repot your indoor plants. Give them all a dose of liquid fertiliser and ensure they have a good light position for the winter months.

Now is a great time to start a compost bin with all of your deciduous leaves

Glenice Buck