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Seasonal work in the Garden - Mid Spring

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Mid-spring
Seed sowing must go on, because a late start can spoil the display in the flower garden. Cut back straggly, evergreen shrubs to encourage new growth from the base. If cold winds persist, shield newly planted shrubs with screens.

TREES AND SHRUBS
Prune hardy fuchsias, buddleias and other shrubs which flower on current season’s growth to two or three buds from base.
Prune hydrangeas whose flower heads were retained for winter display.
Plant bare-rooted evergreens as long as the ground is moist, but only plant deciduous trees and shrubs if they are containerised.
Continue the layering of shrubs begun in early spring, and layer camellias, rhododendrons and other acid-loving evergreens.
Prune early flowering shrubs, such as forsythia, as the flowers fade.

CLIMBERS
Tie in young shoots of large-flowered clematis hybrids to prevent them breaking in windy weather. Handle them carefully – they break easily.

ROSES
Complete all pruning by mid-season and lightly rake a rose fertiliser into the surface soil.
Mulch with well-rotted farmyard manure or garden compost when the ground is moist.
Plant roses only if they are containerised, and conditions are frost-free.
Tie in new growth on climbing and rambling roses.

HERBACEOUS PERENNIALS
Finish dividing and replanting clumps of late summer to autumn perennials such as asters, rudbeckia, monarda and Schizostylis coccinea.
Stake tall-growing plants such as delphiniums and Michaelmas daisies at an early stage of growth.

ALPINES
Plant any alpine plants now and they will quickly establish themselves.

WATER AND BOG PLANTS
If it is a reasonably mild season, plant aquatic plants, such as water lilies; otherwise postpone this job until late spring.

BULBS, CORMS AND TUBERS
Deadhead spring bulbs but leave foliage for a minimum of six weeks or until foliage yellows.
Plant nerine bowdenii for autumn flowering.

ANNUALS AND BIENNIALS
Plant out and stake spring-sown sweet peas.
Complete indoor sowings of half-hardy annual seeds.
Continue sowing hardy annual seeds in open garden when soil conditions permit.

LAWNS
Apply selective weedkillers if necessary.
Mow at least once a week, gradually lowering the blades to about ½ in.

GENERAL MAINTENANCE
Hoe to remove all weeds to prevent them seeding and taking nutrients from other plants.

Next:
Late Spring


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