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Gardening Advice Blog

Welcome to the CountryLife Gardening Blog, written by our horticulturist to provide you with the best tips & advice for all things gardening!  We have been shortlisted for Best Lifestyle Blog in the Littlewoods Ireland Blog Awards 2016 Company Category. 

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August in the Garden

by CountryLife Gardening | Jul 27, 2015

August in the garden
The first day of August will be soon upon us but temperatures are still quite high and these moist and humid conditions will provide excellent growing conditions - so get those gloves on, there is lots to do.

Flowers

  • Remove any dead wood from your shrubs and climbers this will redirect the plant’s energy into producing more growth and gives it the space to do so.
  • Be sure to check hanging baskets and window boxes for pests such as aphids. Spray them with a garden hose to knock the majority of insects off and then treat the plants with a general insecticide to keep pests at bay.
  • Early flowering climbers such as clematis Montana should be pruned now to ensure they flower next spring.
  • Buy spring bulbs and plant them as soon as possible - the fresher they are going into the ground, the better they will flower
  • Cut back unsightly dead flower stems on early flowering perennials. On specimens such as berginia cordifolia you may decide to leave the seed head as these can add character to the garden at this time of year.
  • Spray your roses for pests and diseases such as aphids, greenfly, blackfly, mildew and rust. 
  • Shrub roses can now be pruned, cut back any stems with dead flowers to an outward facing node further down the stem. This will allow it to give more energy to flowering. Roses which are well looked after, should flower up to first frost.

Fruit & Veg

  • Use netting to protect blackberries, autumn raspberries and other berries from birds.
  • Transplant well-rooted strawberry runners and trim the leaves from strawberries that have finished fruiting.
  • Use a fork to ease onions from the soil to prepare them for harvesting.
  • Water crops regularly, especially during spells of hot weather.

Around the Garden

  • Feed your lawn if you haven’t already done so, don’t forget to treat it for weeds and moss. Continue mowing regularly but remember not too closely!
  • If you have a small lawn it is a good idea to remove flower heads of weeds by hand before they go to seed and multiply.
  • Buy or build compost bins to help recycle all your kitchen and garden waste - read our "Introduction to compost" for more advice.
Written by Jean

Here to help! - remember if you have any questions feel free to pop into one of our garden centres or you can contact us on our Facebook and Twitter pages and email us at: hello@countrylife.ie

Jean's Bio

Hi my name is Jean, I am a horticulturist with CountryLife in the Ashford branch. I grew up on a farm where we always had a veg garden, so you could say that horticulture and agriculture is in the blood! I studied Landscape Horticulture in UCD and worked part-time in Fernhill Garden Centre, Athlone while I was in college. After graduating I worked in Landscape Architecture for three years before returning to the Garden Centre trade. I began in Keane’s Garden Centre, Kilcolgan, Co Galway and returned to Fernhill Garden Centre for three years before joining CountryLife.  Being a horticulturalist is a great job, you are surrounded by nature every day and there is always something to be done. Meeting customers and giving the advice is very rewarding especially when they report back positive results. I love growing my own fruit and veg and I’m always trying new varieties and ways of growing. The seasons are always changing and while the weather is challenging in Ireland, I believe we grow the best produce in the world.