Topical Gardening Tips – Mid-Spring

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Mid Spring Garden

Garden waste composts best and quickest in a hot heap. Cover the heap and insulate the sides if practical. Mix hard and soft waste if you have mainly grass clippings tear up some cardboard or newspaper to avoid a soggy mess.

Keep sowing summer bedding indoors. Half hardy annuals can be sown out doors in May. Prick out seedlings as soon as they are large enough to handle.

Start a weed suppression routine. Hoe out any weeds or hand remove any pernicious perennials. Mulch to suppress and avoid weeds.Spot spray weed killer on hard to get at weeds in paving and wall cracks. Treat patios and paths with algicide or moss killer to remove slippy green paths.

Feed actively growing plants with a general granular fertilizer especially those cut back to reshape them. Give acid loving plants like Azalea, Rhododendron Pieris and Camellia a dressing of ericaceous fertilizer. Spring bulbs need food storage for next year so I apply a drenching of liquid feed.

Protect plants from fickle spring cold snaps. Keep cloches and fleece to hand and harden off young plants and seedlings raised under glass.

Fruit trees deserve special care to avoid infestations. Raspberries and Gooseberries need to be sprayed with a fungicide. Apples and Pears should be sprayed with a combined spray of insecticide and fungicide while the buds are green and again when they show colour. Do not spray open flowers.

Keep plants healthy by watering before they dry out, feeding to sustain growth, reducing competition from weeds and tidying dead and damaged plant matter away. Do not over feed as the growth will be soft and sappy just as the pests want them – follow the instructions on the feed.

Greenhouse tomatoes can be trained as cordons up a string or cane. Secure the string under the tomatoe when it is planted.

Propagate herbs and Regal Pelargoniums from soft-tip cuttings. Sage, Bay, Lemon Verbena, French Tarragon and Thyme can all be grown from cuttings. Crop regularly to get fresh herbs.

Sow early Peas, Kelevedon Wonder, Fortune or main crop Rondo in a piece of gutteringand slide it into a trench when they are growing. this allows you to protect them from mice birds and bad weather.


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