Sit back, relax and enjoy your garden this July

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July is the month for you to get out and enjoy your garden - whether it’s an open area in the country or a more compact urban space.

The lazy, hazy days of summer are best spent enjoying the plants you have lovingly nurtured and cared for over the past months that are now in full flower.

You do need to keep an eye on watering this month though to make sure your garden doesn’t suffer from dehydration.

Conserve water and help plants in the summer by moving pots out of full sun into the shade where possible.

Some tips for good watering include using water-retaining gel in containers (which you can get at your local garden centre), water the area directly above the roots and a good watering less frequently is better for them than watering little and often.

Gardening myth of the month is that drought tolerant plants don’t need watering, which of course is not necessarily the case.

Even if it’s a cactus or bamboo, plants need water to grow, especially until their roots get established deep into the soil.

After that, drought-tolerant plants don’t need too much watering, except during a really prolonged dry period when they need water as much as any other plant.

A number of Salvia varieties will tolerate dry conditions and several like to dry out in between waterings.

A popular choice for landscapers and gardeners alike, Salvias are long flowering with the potential to put on a show from June through to October.

Although July is a time to put your feet up and relax in the garden, there are still a few tasks to keep you busy.

Here is some top tips for the month.

• Place conservatory plants outside now that it is warm.

• Introduce water tubs and new plants if dry, but be water-wise.

• Deadhead plants to ensure continuous flowering.

• Support tall plants and flowers with stakes.

• Pick courgettes before they become marrows and harvest other fruit and veg.

• Clear algae, blanket weeds and debris from ponds and keep them topped up.

• Order catalogues for next year’s spring-flowering bulbs.

• Give the lawn a summer feed, especially if not given a spring feed.

• Keep on top of weeding.

• Lastly, keep an eye out for pests... they don’t have summer holidays!