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Top tips for gardening in May
Plant out Dahlia plants towards the end of the month. Be sure to keep an ear open for any frost warnings and take the appropriate action. Often at this time of year, the frosts are not too sharp and sheets of newspaper will often be sufficient protection, however a better solution is to use crop fleece. This can be purchased from our shop by the metre.
In the vegetable garden, marrows and courgettes can be planted out towards the end of the month, along with Runner beans, but remember they will also need protection from frosts. If you prefer growing from seed, direct-sown beans and sweetcorn may be sown earlier than planting plants this month, as by the time they germinate the frosts will have passed. If you are looking to create vegetable beds at working height, then come and have a look at our selection of wooden products.
Our range of grafted vegetables, such as Tomatoes, Aubergine, Pepper and Sweet potatoes, are available from our seasonal heated greenhouse. Grafted plants have long been used in commercial production, and are now increasing in popularity amongst our gardeners. They prove excellent value for money with a longer harvest with a bumper crop and they offer greater resistance to pests and disease – perfect for those gardening in May.
Enviromesh is the best way to protect carrots from carrot fly. Put the mesh in place over wire hoops to create a tunnel that can then be left until the crop is ready for harvesting. The alternative is to erect a barrier of fine mesh between the rows. This has the effect of making the fly ascend so being unable to reach the plants where she lays her eggs. Never leave thinnings on the ground as it is the scent of carrots that attracts the fly.
Treat the weeds in established lawns this month when they are growing quickly. A selective weedkiller, such as Weedol Lawn is the answer. For small lawns or for treating the odd weed, Weedol Lawn comes in a ready to use, handy spray bottle or for larger areas, there is a 500ml or a 1litre size which will need diluting before use. Never use treated grass clippings in compost bins as the traces of herbicides could harm other plants.
Lawns that are in a strong healthy condition should be able to withstand any long periods without rain. Make sure your lawn is in tip-top condition by applying one of the products from our extensive range. We have a good selection of lawn fertilisers, including Mo Bacter, which is an organic fertiliser. It has a slow release action, which will feed your lawn for over twelve weeks, and it also contains a friendly bacteria which eats moss so it does not need to be raked out. It is also children and pet-friendly.
One of the most destructive pests present in today’s gardens is the dreaded Vine Weevil. The adults are rarely seen as they feed on the foliage of suitable plants at night. This causes ugly notched tears but it is the grubs that do the worst damage by eating away the roots of plants. The grubs are white with brown heads, they are clearly visible if you knock the plants out of their pots, but do not confuse them with the small round light brown pellets that are slow-release fertilisers. The safest and easiest way to control this pest is by treating with nematodes and these can be purchased from our garden shop.
The other present-day bug that is causing havoc amongst lilies, is the bright Red Lily Beetle. Other than making daily inspections and swashing the little pests between your fingers, there is Provado Ultimate Bug Killer. Remember to use carefully as it kills most insects – the good, the bad and the ugly. As with all insecticides, this should be applied in accordance with the instructions on the packet.
Contact our friendly team
Browse our range of plants, tools and accessories at our garden centre in St Albans – ideal for gardening in May.
For more information, contact our friendly team on 01727 822255 or email us on firstname.lastname@example.org.