The garden is at its most colourful with the frantic rush for growth replaced by a frenzy to produce flowers. Whilst there might not be much planting to undertake in July, the primary focus for the garden will be maintaining your plants and borders. Keep a watch out for garden pests; encourage birds and wildlife into the garden to take care of greenfly and slugs naturally.
- Prune late spring and early summer flowering shrubs immediately after flowering to promote new growth.
- Dead head Sweet Peas to increase the flowering season.
- Deadhead Roses and feed regularly.
- Feed perennials and shrubs with a granular fertiliser such as chicken pellets or growmore and hoe into the soil.
- Remove faded flowers on Delphiniums and Lupins. This may encourage a second flowering.
- Trim spring flowering Heathers to remove flower heads and to keep in shape.
- Tie in and train new growth on climbing and rambling Roses.
- Water newly planted shrubs and perennials in dry conditions.
- Treat any serious outbreaks of pests and diseases.
- Tie tall flowering herbaceous perennials to supports such as canes.
- Walk around the garden regularly and pull out weeds as they appear rather than digging or hoeing which encourages the soil to dry out.
- Put pots of plants into gaps in the borders.
- Place your orders for autumn and winter plug plants.
- In hot weather, water in the evening to reduce the amount of evaporation.
- Snip off dead flower heads regularly to encourage lots more flowers.
- Water containers regularly even if it has rained - at least twice a day during hot weather.
- Feed container plants and hanging baskets with a liquid fertiliser such as Feed-all or Miracle-Gro every week.
- Before you go on holiday, move your pots to a lightly shaded spot so they don't dry out as quickly and are easier for neighbours to water. Better still, put them in a strong cardboard box lined with a plastic bin bag and fill the bottom with about 2.5cm (1") of water.
- Continue to mow grass, raising the height of cut in dry weather.
- Check nets on fruit cages to make sure that they have not moved or been damaged.
- Strawberry runners can be pegged down into soil or pots to encourage rooting for producing new plants.
- Train new growth on trained fruit trees removing side shoots.
- Mulch Rhubarb plants and remove flower spikes.
- Remove straw from under Strawberries that have finished fruiting.
- Pick Raspberries regularly.
- Summer prune fruit trees such as Apple, Pear, Plum and Cherry.
- Harvest early Potatoes.
- Harvest globe Artichokes.
- Earth up main crop potatoes to give an increased yield.
- Keep onions well watered to achieve the best size.
- Sow salad crops directly into the ground to continue getting fresh plants.
- Spray Peaches and Nectarines every day with tepid water.
- Use biological control where pests are a problem.
- Ensure that all vents are working and close them on cool evenings.
- Remove faded flowers and dropped foliage to prevent the build up of fungal diseases.
- Continue to feed pond fish.
- Remove any blanket weed by twirling it around on a stick.
- Check filters on pumps to ensure that they are not blocked.
- Remove any plant material that has fallen into the pond to prevent the build up of disease.
- If you have wooden garden furniture, apply an appropriate oil to prevent the wood drying out in the sun and splitting.
- Clean paving or slabs with an algaecide.