Gardening through the year Gardening jobs for July
Get a bumper vegetable harvest
Now's the time to reap of lot of what you've sown, but remember there's still time to plant extra crops. Keep an eye on the watering and keep your fingers crossed for happy sunny summer days.
- Catch veg while it's at its peak and harvest it regularly rather than leaving it to go woody or bitter-tasting. Remember that if you have more of something than you want to eat or store, it's just as useful to recycle it by adding it to the compost heap. Read our review of Best Buy tumbling compost bins.
- Limit tomato growth by pinching out the growing tip of your cordon tomato plant when it reaches the roof of the greenhouse. Pinch out the side-shoots as they develop.
- Veg to sow outdoors in July include beetroot, carrots, dwarf beans, lettuce, radishes and runner beans.
Feed your lawn
For many of us the lawn is the centrepiece to the garden that sets off everything else.
- As long as there is no drought, it's worth feeding the lawn regularly. Discover our Best Buy lawn feeds.
- During dry weather, raise the blades on your lawnmower to allow the grass to grow a little bit longer. This will keep it greener and help it retain moisture.
- Don't panic if your grass does turn brown as it will soon green up again when the rain returns.
Encourage late-summer flowers
Now we're in July the garden is just past its peak.
- Cut back early-flowering perennials to the ground and they will send up fresh leaves and maybe even the bonus of some extra late-summer flowers.
- Give them a boost after pruning with a good soak of water and some tomato feed.
- Exploit plants' desperate need to set seed by removing blooms as they fade. This will encourage them to produce more flowers to replace them.
- Remember that plants in containers are dependent on you for their water as they'll get little benefit from any rain. Give them a good soak at least once a day in sunny weather.
Keep your pond in top condition
Ponds and other water features also need some care in July and August to keep them healthy and looking good.
- Look out for any yellowing leaves on water lilies and other water plants and remove them promptly. Allowing them to fall off and rot in the water will decrease water quality.
- Remove blanket weed with a net or rake to let oxygen into your pond. Remember to give aquatic life a chance to get back to the water by piling the weed next to the pond for a day.
- Top up water levels. Water can evaporate rapidly from water features and ponds in the height of summer, so top them up if the water level drops significantly. Rainwater from a water butt is best – chemicals in tap water can affect the nutrient balance in the pond.
- If you area is under a hosepipe ban, you can still use it to top up your pond if you have fish.
- Remember to clean any filters and pumps.