Hello again! Did you manage to plant out any Strawberries yet? As the garden comes alive with buds and wildlife, I am having to make sure I hide from all the birds looking for food! So, make sure you protect your Strawberries.
The warmer weather has encouraged growth spurts in all plants, as climbing plants develop this new growth needs to be tied in. This allows you to train the growth in the direction you would like it to go, whether it’s to cover a wall or to create a screened area. This will also help to stop the climbing plant getting tangled up in neighbouring plants and restricting their growth.
Equally it is time to stake your perennials. Doing this will help to protect stems from damage by supporting them and enabling you to train the plant to grow upright, stopping it from covering and smothering neighbouring plants. It is easier to stake them early when leaves haven’t formed, allowing you to place the stake in the correct place without the risk of damaging growth or buds.
Now is a good time to feed plants, as they are beginning to grow and develop buds. You can do this by sprinkling fertiliser on the soil surface and work it into the topsoil with a hand rake. Similarly for plants in pots, you can remove the top couple of centimetres of soil and replace with new compost that has feed already mixed in. It is also the perfect time to feed your Roses and shrubs, spread a handful of fertiliser around the base and dig it in, roses need at least two feeds each summer.
If it is warm, late May is normally a safe time to plant out bedding plants. Bedding plants do not like being planted out in the cold, this is due to them being grown in perfect, protected conditions (if bought from the garden centre). They will need time to harden off before they are planted in their final position or protect them with cloches and fleece on cold days and nights. Planting them in the cold will delay their growth and flowering for several weeks.
Willie the Worm