Gardening through the year


Spring [March-May]

  • Prune roses
  • Sow hardy annuals outdoors and half-hardy annuals in a heated propagator in the greenhouse or on a windowsill indoors
  • Tidy borders, weed and mulch with compost or manure
  • Lift and divide herbaceous perennials
  • Start mowing the lawn regularly and apply lawn weed and feed
  • Plant new roses, trees, shrubs and perennials
  • Feed specimen trees, roses, shrubs and hedge and established beds and borders, with a general purpose organic fertilizer
  • Prick out half-hardy annual seedlings or pot them up as necessary
  • Prune spring-flowering shrubs after flowering
  • Clip box hedges
  • After the last frost plant out half-hardy annuals in containers and outdoor beds
  • After the last frost plant out dahlias, bring out houseplants and plant any slightly tender shrubs
  • Take cuttings from new growth of shrubs and perennials

Summer [June-August]

  • Begin to feed, water and deadhead bedding plants
  • Feed and deadhead roses after the first flush of flowers
  • Sow seeds of perennial plants, winter bedding and biennials outdoors
  • Make first trim of yew and leafy hedges, such as beech
  • Ensure any winter planted trees and shrubs are not suffering from dry periods, give them a good soak if necessary
  • If you have a pool, keep it aerated and the water level topped up
  • Plant autumn-flowering bulbs, such as colchicums and sternbergias
  • In dry weather, raise the mower blades slightly as longer grass stays greener
  • Keep on top of the weeding, feeding, deadheading and watering
  • Feed and water rhododendrons if the weather is dry
  • Sow hardy annual seeds in pots for autumn planting
  • Deadhead and stake perennials to keep them flowering and looking neat
  • Take semi-ripe cuttings of shrubs

Autumn [September-November]

  • Bring in tender plants under cover before the first frosts
  • Plant or move evergreens and conifers, while the soil is still warm
  • Plant spring bedding, such as wallflowers and polyanthus
  • Plant spring bulbs
  • Tidy perennials, removing dead stems but leaving seed-heads for birds to eat
  • Plant deciduous trees, shrubs and climbers
  • Lay new lawns, so long as soil is not too wet
  • Batten down the hatches, ensuring nothing can blow about and cause damage on windy nights
  • Plant shrubs, roses and hedging plants sold with bare roots
  • Clear up fallen leaves and compost them
  • Plant tulips and hyacinths
  • Move deciduous trees and shrubs once they have lost their leaves
  • Take hardwood cuttings from shrubs and roses

Winter [December-February]

Key jobs for winter
  • If it’s a mild winter, continue to cut the lawn, so long as it’s growing, but raise the height of the mower blades
  • Prevent containers planted with winter bedding or all-year-round shrubs from freezing solid by wrapping them with bubblewrap or taking them into shelter
  • Get rid of slimy patches on the patio and paving by scrubbing with a broom or blasting with a pressure washer
  • Remember to feed indoor plants occasionally
  •   Order seed catalogues and plan what you’re going to grow in the spring
  • Now is a good time to get the jobs done you wont have time for later in the new year so don't be sitting still

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