The Garden in July
A concise guide to some of the jobs that need to be done this month and a selection of some of the plants that are at their best in July.
July; the height of summer. Our gardens should now be at their blooming best. Borders are packed full of colour and scent during this midsummer month. During July, probably more than any other month, our gardens become outdoor extensions to our homes, if the weather is good, many of us spend more time in our gardens this month than we do indoors. Hours spent tending the kitchen garden in previous months reap rewards during July with lots of harvesting to do.
Some Jobs That Need to be Done This Month
- Lift and divide Irises.
- Dig up clumps of Irises that have not been split for a few years. This applies to the dwarf, intermediate and tall rhizomatous types. This improves and maintains the vigour of the irises, maintaining a good flowering performance.
July is a good time to lift and store spring bulbs such as Daffodils and Tulips. You don’t have to do this, but it is a good routine to get into because all bulbs naturally multiply in the soil and often become congested. Dig up the bulbs, separate off any young new bulbs and discard any damaged or diseased ones. Replant in the autumn with plenty of space between each bulb.
Some of the Other Jobs That Need to be Done in July
- Tie flowers that are flopping over on to stakes
- Regular lawn mowing (raise the height of cut in very dry weather)
- Regularly spray roses against greenfly and blackspot
- Damp down greenhouse paths regularly to create a humid atmosphere that pests such as red spider mite do not like
Our Plant of the Month
The Coneflowers are one of my favourite summer flowering perennials. Echinacea ‘Hot Summer’ is a favourite, it has a long flowering period, well into early autumn. Starting off gold, the flowers turn orange and finish bright red. So with flowers on the same plant maturing at different time you get 3 colours on one plant. Best grown in full sun, Echinacea ‘Hot Summer’ is also attractive to bees, butterflies and birds.