What would you like to do this August? Enjoying lazy summer days outdoors is bound to be near the top of your list. It’s worth setting aside some time for gardening too, though, as plants need a helping hand now that temperatures are at their highest.
Here’s your August gardening ‘to do’ list.
While you’ve been making the most of the sunshine, so have the weeds… Liberate your lawn from nuisance plants such as yarrow and hawk’s beard (a common sight on parched plots) this month. Dig them up with a weeding tool (a long-handled one will help to protect your back), making sure that you remove all the roots.
Plants in pots, planters and hanging baskets are vulnerable to drying out in August. Warning signs include the compost or soil becoming pale or crumbly and pots blowing over. Tackle the problem by watering containers at times when the sun’s rays don’t feel particularly strong, so the water can soak into the earth rather than evaporate.
While butterfly bushes, hydrangeas and other summer-flowering shrubs provide beauty and colour, they often grow too enthusiastically, swamping other plants. August is the ideal time to prune them, as they’ll have finished or almost finished flowering for the season by now.
If your greenhouse’s temperature climbs above 27°C, your plants will be at risk of heat stress, which can cause irreversible damage. Thankfully, you can protect them with a simple technique known as ‘damping down’. When temperatures are expected to soar, cover the greenhouse floor in water each morning to increase humidity levels and keep plants happy.
Although many flowering plants are past their prime by August, the delightfully named autumn joy, lemon queen and others are just getting started, so look out for buds. It’s worth keeping an eye on the plants and ensuring they’re watered regularly at this crucial stage. You’ll be rewarded with lovely blooms at the end of this season and in the next.
August is traditionally the time when people jet off on holiday; however, while they’re relaxing abroad, their gardens may be suffering from neglect. Why not ask your neighbours to look after your garden during your holiday and do the same for them when they’re away? Performing simple tasks for each other, such as watering and pruning, will keep outdoor spaces looking good up and down the street!
Remember how delicious your summer strawberries tasted when you first picked them in June? Now it’s time to make the last strawberry harvest of the season and assess the plants’ condition. By getting rid of tired runners, you’ll give the younger ones room to grow.
In August, avoid deadheading any shrubs that’ll produce autumnal berries, such as beautyberry and harlequin. They need to focus on producing fruit rather than flowers now.
Don’t reach the end of August without sowing green manures – these hardy, fast-growing plants are invaluable. They store soil’s nutrients, stopping them being washed away – and wasted – by autumn’s rainfall. In spring, dig the plants into the soil to enrich it.
Let summer flowers such as sweet peas and love-in-a-mist go to seed, with a view to gathering up the seeds for future use. As Gardener’s World magazine suggests, try putting them in carefully labelled envelopes. That’ll make finding the seeds you want to sow straightforward, helping to keep your garden in bloom!
If you have big dreams for your garden but aren’t sure where to start, don’t worry. You can rely on our experienced Surrey gardening and landscaping team to make your outdoor space look amazing this August and beyond!
For real and artificial lawns, patios, ponds, summerhouses and other garden features, simply call Extreme Handyman, Fencing and Decorating Service today on 020 8224 0830 or .