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Make your garden shine Posted On 30 May 2018

Spring is here, which means it’s time to start preparing your garden for the sunny times ahead: from a spring clean to the importance of a compost bin, we’ve got you covered!

With the spring and summer seasons on the way – destined (we hope) to bring warmer weather, a wonderful way to celebrate this is by making your garden the best it can be. Whether it’s only a small plot, or boasting acreage, there is no excuse not to get out there and show your garden the love it’s been missing throughout winter. It’s time to bring your garden to life!

One of the biggest complements to all the garden work you will do in spring is the extra colour, life and exuberance summer will bring to it. There are certain plants and flowers which really show off their full potential when summer comes around too (more on this later on). A particularly efficient thing you can do at this early stage is to get your orders in for the things you’ll need for summer, such as flowering bulbs and seeds. You could perhaps even make some additions to your gardening toolset.

You should now be ready to begin with what is perhaps the most fundamentally important task of all: a good old-fashioned spring clean! Rid your garden of all debris, such as leaves, sticks, and any other general rubbish you may find lurking amongst your grassy canvas. The plant beds might also be littered with weeds and other infestations; using a rake can help expose these. Make sure any outbuildings, including greenhouses, are thoroughly cleaned/tidied out so that they can function healthily as hubs for the brighter seasons. The floor, benches and the inside of the glass of the greenhouse should all be doused with disinfectant to kill any pests and/or diseases that may still linger from the winter. Since any respectable gardener will have a trusty toolset, making sure the tools themselves are clean is paramount. A great tip is to put your rusty tools in white vinegar – leave them soaking for a few hours, and it will dissolve the rust off of the metal.

Pruning and hedge trimming are by no means trivial jobs. On the contrary, there are a wide range of benefits your garden will glean from this. Encouraging more fruit buds to grow for the lighter seasons ahead, preventing fruit bushes and spring shrubs from expanding to an unreasonable size, allowing for better flowering to flourish, and even deterring diseases from festering are some of those benefits. Furthermore, the condition of the grass itself is vitally important to make sure there will be a successful bloom during the spring and summer seasons. Feeding the lawn will increase vigour and help prevent weeds and moss from growing.

Your newly laid flower beds will crave their soil being cultivated, as it will help the flowers thrive to their full potential. The more time you spend on this, the more thoroughly the soil will be prepared for your plants and flowers. Dig an entire trench down the plant bed, and transport soil from one end to the other and vice versa. This will fully refresh the soil and give it some aeration.

Some of the best vegetables to grow in spring are peas, kale, radishes, lettuce, chard and spinach, whilst there is an array of different plants and flowers to grow too. But nothing lends itself to summer like a spectacular set of flowers to brighten your day. The Yarrow, bright yellow in their appearance, can be recognised as one of the best flowers to plant this summer, as it’s easily adaptable to the weather, and will blossom with minimum care. Marigolds, typically with a beautiful golden look, are flowers that are both easy to plant and easy to care for; they can also come in a variety of different colours, making them ideal for landscaping and contrasting them against other vibrant florals. The Dahlia, with a vibrant shades of colour, make beautiful symmetrical balls of brightly coloured petals that will cheer up any garden.

Something every good gardener should have in their armoury is a compost bin. It should consist of a good balance of grass clippings, vegetable peelings, paper and wood pruning. As well as it being a bin for gardening waste, it will also be beneficial for your plants as it turns into compost.

Few flowers represent the joy of summer quite like the Coreopsis. They are stunning to the eye and prove to be very little hassle for the gardener. But our top pick for the best summer flowers has to be the Gloriosa Daisy. Commonly known as Black Eyed Susan, it has bright yellow to orange petals with a deep brown to black centre. It grows up to 3.5 feet tall and also survives during cooler weather. The Gloriosa Daisy attracts butterflies and bees, making it an absolutely perfect adornment for the summer season.

Now, the worst thing to happen at this stage would be for all of this hard work to have been in vain. Pests, such as slugs, will love to eat your newly planted vegetation! Dousing these new projects with various chemicals isn’t the only solution though. Slugs, for instance, hate crushed egg shells. So why not line your plant and flower beds with these to keep slugs at bay and protect your hardwork!

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