What to Do in the Garden This Week - August 7th

AlanGardenMaster
Published on August 7th 2020
51
Cabbages and Kale garden
Plant pests can be a problem at this time of the year, so I've some personal tips on keeping those at bay. There are still some veggies that you can plant and a bit of maintenance to keep your garden looking tip-top! Don't forget my more detailed monthly Garden Tips.

Lawns, paths and drives

  • Weeds on drives and paths may need treating again. Use Weedol Pathclear or something similar. It works for up to 3 - 6 months, depending on the type of weed.
  • Let the grass on your lawn grow longer. This is not an excuse to mothball the mower until next spring, but rather a good ploy to get through dry periods without having to use as much water to keep the lawn looking green. Raise the mower blades to about two inches and reduce cutting frequency.
  • Cut the lawn edges regularly; this week might be an ideal time to use an edging iron to straighten them out. The insertion of a plastic or metal edging strip will support the edges. If floppy plants make cutting close to the borders difficult, it could be worth laying a line of decorative paving for them to lie on. You can also buy very effective plant supports.

Hardy perennial plants

A close up of a German Flag Iris plant
  • Divide clumps of bearded and flag iris. Throw away the oldest rhizomes and replant the youngest part so that it is only partially submerged.
  • Cut seed heads off lupins and foxgloves. They may then produce some more (smaller) blooms this year.
  • Cut back and feed lady’s mantle, catmint and hardy geranium. You may then get more blooms.
  • Regularly remove dead flowers from dahlias to ensure that they keep blooming until the first frost of autumn.
  • Nip the fruits off fuchsia to encourage them to keep flowering. The fruits are edible, but I find the blooms more attractive!

Home grown food - pests

A net tent over kale in a garden
  • Cabbage, cauliflower, sprouts and other Brassica varieties get a multitude of pests at this time of year. Use fine mesh to protect vegetable crops against flying pests. It is particularly effective against carrot and cabbage root fly and caterpillars.
  • If you would rather not cover your vegetables to keep pests off, try regular sprays of diluted garlic.
  • Watch out for red spider mites on greenhouse plants. Symptoms include pale speckles appearing on the shoot tips, webbing and tiny insects just visible to the naked eye. Introduce predatory mites as soon as you see this troublesome pest.

Planting

A plant in a garden
  • Plant more winter vegetables. As it’s late for most, buy plug or baby plants. This is especially true for leeks, purple sprouting, beetroot and kale.
  • Pot up a few roots of garden mint. Kept inside you will get fresh mint well into winter.
Leek plants in a garden
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