• June: Taking Indoor Plants Outside

    Indoor plants can be put outside for the summer but remember that the outdoor conditions differ greatly from indoors.  The light is much stronger; there is more wind; outdoor temperatures are more varied.  Acclimatize them gradually for a few days and find a location that gives them some protection from the sun and wind.  They will need to be watered more frequently and will need to be fed.  Some plants such as the ficus benjamina do not like to be moved.

  • June: Trimming Early Blooming, Low Growing Perennials

    Low growing spring perennials such as phlox subulata and aubrietia need to have a little trim after the blossoms have faded – a little off the top and a little off the sides helps to keep the plant in good shape.  The job can easily be done with a pair of shears.

     

  • June: Bulb Foliage

    Spring blooming bulb foliage should never be cut off.  Allow the foliage to wither and die back naturally.  The foliage is necessary to build up the store of food in the bulb for next year’s blooms.  And please – do not braid the foliage.

  • June: Pinching the Candles on Mugo Pines

    The various forms of mugo pines will develop new growth tips called candles.  These candles appear in late May and must be pruned back by one half to two thirds each spring to keep the shrub compact and dense.  This pruning should be done once the candle is fully extended but the needles on it are still short and held close to the candle – usually needs to be done before the middle of June.

  • June: Daily Check-up

    Stroll through your garden daily checking plants for disease and undesirable pests – problems can be minimized when discovered and dealt with early.

  • June: Bearded Iris

    As your bearded iris finish blooming, remove the flower stalk close to the foliage.  Don’t cut the foliage into a fan shape.  The foliage is needed for the photosynthesis process to build up strength for next year’s blooms.  Remove the foliage as it browns and shrivels.

     

  • June: Mulch Your Beds

    When the soil has warmed, add a 5-8 cm layer of organic mulch to combat weeds, retain soil moisture and improve the soil. To prevent fungal disease, keep mulch away from crowns of perennials, stems of shrubs and trunks of trees. Chopped and composted leaves, grass clippings, or backyard compost and grass clippings work very well, or you can purchase a good commercial product such as shredded or composted pine bark.

  • June: Welcome a Toad to Your Garden

    Toads are great garden helpers, eating thousands of insects. To attract them, provide the right environment. Toads are amphibious, needing access to a shallow pond when breeding and enjoying a moist environment all the time. Near the pond, place logs, rocks, plants or piles of leaves, under which the toads can burrow into the cool damp earth and take refuge from the sun.

  • June: Stake Floppy Perennials

    Delphiniums, lilies and even big flowering peonies, have a tendency to flop over and require support. It’s best to provide it as early as possible, before the plant becomes too big. Simple bamboo or plastic-coated metal stakes and grids are inexpensive, as well as easy to use and to camouflage among the plants. For a more rustic look, you can prop up plants with the forked branches left from pruning your shrubs.

  • June: Make the Most of Your Vegetable Garden

    For maximum productivity, employ successive sowing. Early season lettuce, mixed greens, spinach, turnips, beets and radishes can be sown every 2-3 weeks for a constant supply. As the weather warms up, replace the early crops with others. For example, once the peas are harvested, replace them with pole beans, which will produce a good crop until frost.

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