Garden jobs in June

Despite the promise of rain it has been rather disappointing: too short lived and rather light. I’d like a good down pour which lasted the night and cleared around 5am so the ground was dry enough to work again the following morning! I’ve resorted to adding irrigation systems to a lot of my gardens so that watering is directed to the plants that need it and not wasted. So what other jobs should you be doing in the garden this month.

Box clipping

June is when I allow myself the luxury of beginning to clip all my box (buxussempervirens) hedging and shaped topiary.  I use Derby day (this year Saturday 4th June) as the marker to begin but it often takes me a month to finish! It’s then just a case of trimming any over exuberant growth as it appears to keep everything in shape.

One of the clipped box spheres in a Lincolnshire Garden

Any plant grown in a pot needs feeding but box is a greedy plant and will benefit from regular feeding and watering.

If box is not your thing then opt for an alternative plant: yew, holly, santalina and loniceranitida make great specimens for topiary too.

Planting out and feeding

Once all danger of frost has passed, plant out any annuals grown in seed trays, herbs and vegetables.

Feed tomatoes weekly with a high potash feed and remove side shoots once trusses have set

Herbaceous borders

If you have some chunky clumps of Michaelmas daisies, phlox and delphinium nip out a few growing points now and you will encourage these to regrow and flower later thus prolonging the flowering season.

Continue to tie in and stake plants as they grow to prevent them from flopping. Once herbaceous borders get established you will find that other plants support each other but until this happens it’s important to stake early to prevent damage.

The rose border in a garden I designed in Lincolnshire

Deadhead and keep doing it! I find it very relaxing especially if it is accompanied by a glass of wine - I find most things look better with a glass of wine in your hand!

Fruit

Thin out apples, pears, gooseberries and plums if you have too much fruit. Not is the time to prune new cherry and plum trees. Invest in a good book with diagrams so help.

Lawns

Now is an ideal time to lay turf or re-seed a lawn. Prepare the area by levelling, raking off all stones, then tamping down to firm the soil. Lightly rake over and sow seed or lay turf on this prepared soil and then water. And don’t forget to keep it well watered while it establishes.

Ponds

It’s important to keep an area of pond clear at this time of year and ensure you have plants which allow dragonflies to climb out of the water and plants which allow access to the bank. Remove too vigorous pond plants to keep an area of water clear