A great time of year to visit gardens and garden centres
I volunteer at Picton Castle Gardens each week and each week there is something different to look at. It is wonderful just now – there is a play area for children, a garden shop and tea room too. The castle is just about to open the largest owl collect.ion in Wales in their two large wooden buildings. Pembrokeshire has many inland gardens to go out and enjoy and get inspiration for your own garden.
As I write June’s article we are in the middle of a hot spell and hopefully there will be many more this summer – if you have a greenhouse it is important to create humidity. Growth behind glass at this time of year can be vast, so a moist atmosphere helps to cut down lost moisture and use less moisture – this helps avoid any potential hosepipe ban later in the summer (luckily unusual in West Wales!). Keep the windows and doors open and only close in colder spells – keeping it closed up in summer can encourage mildew. At least twice a week damp down the floor and benches with a watering can, close the door and windows for an hour or so and then open again – this will elevate humidity , keep the temperature down – best to do this in the evening.
Quiz : See if you can find these Garden phrases (answers below)
1) full of lovely words but lacking in substance
2) to stop a problem from getting worse
3) to come out of a difficult situation with your reputation intact
4) someone who is an introvert and prefers to stay on the outside of things
June is the month for early potatoes being ready – nothing is better than digging up the first few for your tea! You should also now be able to pick broad beans, beetroot, salad crops and strawberries (it must be Wimbledon time again).
Keep on top of weeding as young seedlings can be lost amongst unwanted growth. Also look out for slugs, , small blackfly, carrot fly and ants.
Time to plant
If you have not already done so, then plant out courgettes, squashes and marrows – mound the soil up around them slightly to prevent root rot, water the roots and not the leaves and keep feeding.
Plants of the month
Tamarix ‘pink cascade’
Conifer-like in appearance with pink flowers in May and June and makes a good windbreak hedge in coastal areas. This is best pruned hard back every few years to encourage new feathery growth. It can also be grown as a single plant.
This may sound like a ring road around my home city of Birmingham, but this Spanish broom is an excellent coastal plant. Where this differs from gorse is that it is not prickly and the stems stay green. Cut growth back by at least one third in early Spring to promote bushiness. This grows to 3 m in height.
2) to nip in the bud
3) to come up smelling of roses
4) a wallflower
Send us a picture from your garden and we’ll feature it in a Readers Gardens Gallery
We’ll also add your name to a monthly draw for a gardening prize!