Essential Gardening Updates in August – What You Need to Know
Essential gardening updates, with the news that a well-cared for garden can boost house price by up to £82,000 in some cases, it’s worth ensuring that your garden is well-maintained all year round. After all, while you may not have immediate plans to sell your property, keeping it cared for will ensure that when the time does come to move you can increase the price of your property accordingly – and in the mean time you have a delightful space to enjoy regardless of your future plans.
With this in mind, we’ve rounded up some of the gardening updates that you should be carrying out at this time of year, so that your garden is full of health, colour and life as we begin to enter the autumn season in a few months’ time – yes it really is time to be thinking about it!
Plant autumn bulbs
As we just mentioned, now is the time to begin planning what your autumn garden will look like, and while it may seem a long way off, gardening is all about the preparation.
When the gloomy weather begins to arrive, having a garden which is full of colour will ensure that it remains a vibrant space to look out on (if the weather isn’t warm enough for you to sit outside).
Generally speaking, bulbs should be planted around three times their depth, and doing so now will allow them to become more established and grow strongly into autumn. Bulbs should be planted with the growing tip facing upwards and in a well-drained soil to avoid them becoming waterlogged.
Some of the best autumn bulbs include, Crocus, Dahlia, Nerine, Snowdrops and Cyclamen coum.
August is often a tricky month for gardeners, as the plants which were previously in full bloom begin to die-off. However, deadheading plants can not only give them a new lease of life in some cases, it can also ensure that they don’t become unsightly in flower pots and beds. Regularly deadheading is known to encourage energy to divert to stronger areas of a plant, thus creating increased flower growth.
Most bedding plants can be deadheaded and those grown in hanging baskets, as well as Roses, shrubs, climbers, bulbs and Geraniums. Late August is the time to trim Lavender after flowering, as this can ensure that it grows into a nice shape the following year.
There are two tools that you can use; either your finger and thumb or secateurs – which are particularly useful for ‘stringy’ plants or those with tough stems. Flowers should be cut back to their bud or leaf if they are a perennial or annual. Roses can be deadheaded by snapping off the faded flower below the stalk, as this method often increases repeat flowering.
Harvest your crops
If you have a vegetable patch in your garden, then many of your crops will be ready to harvest in August. In order to encourage fruiting, regularly picking your crops when they are ripe and ready to eat will leave you with a better yield.
Crops such as garlic and onions need to be dried out once they have been picked. Once ready, the top growth should begin to turn a brown shade, these should then be picked and placed on top of the soil to dry out.
For tomato plants, leaf growth should be thinned out as this can encourage production of the fruit. Tomato plants are known for becoming particularly out of control if left to their own devices, and growth can be taken away from the fruit if leaves aren’t controlled.
During the summer when temperatures – hopefully – rise, this can take its toll on the garden, leaving it looking a little worse for wear if you don’t keep on top of it.
Regular watering is a must, as this will not only prevent your plants from dying, but ensure that they can reach their growth potential. This is particularly important for potted plants, as they are unable to search in the ground for water through their roots. When watering, take care to ensure that the water reaches the soil, as plants which have large leaves can sometimes act as an umbrella – meaning the water doesn’t reach where it should.
Grass can also take a hit in the warmer weather, leaving you with parched patches on your lawn if you don’t keep up with regular maintenance. Watering the grass will encourage roots to deepen and improve drought resistance. It can also help to raise the cutting height on your lawn mower, so that grass is kept slightly longer, in order to avoid dead grass from showing through.
Now all that’s left for you to do is to don your gardening gloves and begin maintaining your outside sanctuary.