Whether you have a huge garden or simply a small outdoor plot, knowing which tasks should be carried out during each season of the year is important to getting the most out of your space. From cleaning your garden benches to taking plant cuttings, here is your ultimate guide to seasonal gardening.
Making sure that you carry out the right tasks at the right time of year is essential to getting your garden to look its best all year round. If you make the mistake of planting delicate plants too soon in the season, for example, they could be damaged by frost, whereas if you forget to move heat-sensitive plants into a shady spot in the summer, you run the risk of them dying.
Better Homes & Gardens magazine suggests that a well-planned garden transitions naturally from one season to the next without ever losing its beauty. Now, you can create the same effect in your own back garden by following this seasonal plan.
Essential Winter Tasks
While winter may seem like a time for even the keenest of gardeners to relax and take it easy, in fact preparation begins at this time of year. Winter is the time to protect those delicate plants from harsh weather and to check that drains and gutterings are cleared of any debris and fallen leaves. It’s also important to check that your pond is clear of ice and that your greenhouse is well ventilated to avoid fungal diseases from building up in the stagnant air.
During late winter, it’s time to start digging any borders or plant beds which need to be ready for springtime while all tools and equipment should be checked and maintained ready for use in a couple of months’ time. This is also the time of year to plan next year’s garden and to choose seeds and plants in preparation for the spring planting season.
Spring Time Gardening
Spring is one of the best seasons for gardeners, and is the ideal time to start preparing for the beauty of summer. Providing nesting boxes at this time of year will encourage more wildlife into your garden, while taking precautions to stop slugs and snails from damaging your newly planted seedlings is important. The Royal Horticultural Society suggests that now is the time to plant summer-flowering tender bulbs such as gladioli for the most beautiful summer display.
Springtime is the perfect season for planting ornamental plants and borders as well as vegetables, so removing weeds and tidying your flowerbeds is important now. As the spring heads towards summer, it’s vital to keep on top of weeding and, while dealing with the borders and flowerbeds, it’s also important not to forget about the tubs and pots which may still need watering and liquid feeding.
The summer is the time when you’ll get the most enjoyment out of your garden, however it isn’t all relaxation. Keeping weeds down and ensuring that plants have enough water is vital at this time of year, while this is also the right season for taking plant cuttings. If you’ve grown your own vegetables and fruit this is also the time for harvesting.
Gardens pests and mildew are also a problem at this time of year, so taking steps to protect your delicate plants is key. As the summer draws on towards Autumn, it’s time to think already about next spring and to begin planting bulbs in readiness.
Autumn Garden Management
Gardener’s World Magazine suggests that Autumn is a good time to plant perennial bulbs as well as to tidy up all of the fallen leaves. Applying a slow acting fertiliser at this time of year will help to improve the quality of your soil, while preparing the ground ready to receive new plants before the cold of winter sets in is another key task.
As Autumn draws on, any tender plants should be moved into a protected spot, and deciduous shrubs and trees can be planted now in containers or pots. All of the leaves that you’ve swept up from your paths and patio can now be added to a compost heap so that it can decompose over the winter ready for use next year.
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Better Homes & Gardens – http://www.bhg.com/gardening/plans/seasonal/
Royal Horticultural Society - https://www.rhs.org.uk/advice/profile?pid=95
Gardener’s World Magazine – http://www.gardenersworld.com/article-search/?searchterm=seasonal-planting
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