11:29AM, Saturday 30 June 2012
Bonnie Davies is an award winning garden designer who works at Burnham's family-run, Davies Brothers Nursery. Welcome to her blog where she shares her thoughts on all things green.
The brave garden warriers who got out and did their gardens despite the gloomy weather might be feeling a bit downhearted by the problems rain can cause. The biggest problem is that it ruins the flowers, but the good news is that the rain which was the bane of our lives for weeks has made your garden lush, leafy and ready to give you a gorgeous display throughout a summer full of Olympic Barbeques! Here are my top tips for a bloomilicious garden:
1. I know it seems cruel but if your plants have grown a bit leggy (too much stem and not enough leaf like the plant equivalent of Peter Crouch) it is time to give them the chop! Cut them right back to a nice bushy part of the plant, making sure to cut just above where two leaves meet the main stem…(see the above photos).
2. Deadheading is essential because this will encourage more flowers to grow (when a plant sets seed its job is nearly done, so you need to keep removing the tired flowers and seed heads so that the plants will keep working for you.) If you are not a big deadheading fan, don’t worry, you are not alone. The best thing to do is be a bit more ruthless when you take to the scissors so that it will be longer before it needs doing again.
3. Don’t overwater when the weather is damp because plants are more likely to rot off. If your plants are already starting to show signs of this, don’t water them until they have dried out a bit and remove any rotting foliage and flowers that have fallen onto the leaves that will otherwise encourage the plant to rot.
4. Give your plants an energy boost…when we hit that afternoon drop in sugar levels, a choccie bar perks us up, and a liquid feed once a week will do the same for the plants. Just don’t do what my mum did once and put it on neat thinking that the more concentrated it is the better the plants will do. They will frazzle up and die - so be sure to follow the dilution instructions on the packet. You can also sprinkle some slow release food granules onto the surrounding soil to help any yellowing leaves turn back to green.
Most of gardening is about experimenting so trust your instinct - and plants normally respond well. Let me know how you get on!
Happy gardening, Bonnie x
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