Mow lawns when necessary - whenever the grass is growing - the
aim is to maintain a constant height throughout the year. Use a
mowing height of appox. 40mm (1.5 inches). Don't cut grass
too short or you will weaken it. Leave the clippings on the lawn
will help retain moisture and as they breakdown release
Start collecting seed from plants you want to grow next year,
Cut flowers for indoors, using sharp scissors or secateurs and
place into water straight away to prevent wilting.
Ensure newly planted trees and shrubs do not dry out. They often
need much more water than people imagine.
Check whether containers need watering. Aim to keep pots moist,
not wet, and don't let them dry out. Pots and tubs benefit from
topping up with fresh compost. Old compost can be removed and
replaced with new if there is not much room for topping up. Repot
any that have become pot bound.
Clip evergreen hedges and prune spring-flowering shrubs after
flowering. Don't clip/prune anything that has birds nesting in it.
Prune out frost damage from affected evergreen shrubs. Remove any
reverted green shoots on hardy variegated evergreens, to prevent
reversion taking over.
Cut back side shoots on gooseberries to four or five leaves, or
just beyond the fruit clusters. This will speed ripening (by
increasing sun on the fruits), encourage fruit bud formation for
next year, and control aphids on the new growth. Red and white
currants may be pruned in the same way.
When summer-fruiting raspberries have finished cropping promptly
cut out the old canes.
Plant out leeks and brassicas for a winter supply and sow spring
cabbage, turnips, Oriental vegetables, chicory, fennel, and
autumn/winter salads such as lamb's lettuce.
Although it is fairly late in the season, small and
quick-maturing vegetables can still be sown, and will give fast,
edible results. Try radishes and baby carrots, lettuce or
Remember to pick your bean and pea pods as they mature, to stop
them becoming tough and stringy later in the summer.
Don't forget to stop cordon tomatoes by removing the main shoot.
Look for the leaf that's above the fourth truss (set of developing
fruit) and cut it off here. This should ensure that all the fruits
ripen by the end of the season. Bush tomatoes can be left to their
Ensure all vegetables get a regular, consistent supply of water,
using rainwater or recycled grey water wherever possible.
Many indoor plants benefit from being placed outside on the
patio for the summer
Open doors and vent on greenhouses to increase ventilation on
warm, sunny days and damp down the floor of the greenhouse
regularly on hot days, to increase humidity levels.
You don't need to top up ponds, it is perfectly normal for water
levels to drop in the summer! If you can't cope with lower water
levels use collected rain water rather than tap water which is too
rich in nitrates.
Avoid peanuts and large chunks when putting out bird food, as
there is a risk that large pieces could be fed by adults to their
fledglings, and they could choke.
A birdbath can be a vital source of drinking water for birds.
Ensure that yours is kept topped up.
Bug life should be encouraged. It is often when one pest in the
food chain is killed with chemicals that others are suddenly free
to multiply unchecked, so creating further problems for the
Spring-flowering meadows can be cut and mowed this month, after
the bulb foliage has died down naturally. Scything and removal of
clippings is all that is necessary, but closer mowing allows the
area to be used as lawn for the rest of the summer.