Friday, May 25, 2018

10 Aug

Holiday – Proof your Garden!

August is the perfect time to escape for a holiday, but the thought of leaving all your hard gardening work alone  may be extremely daughting. It’s worth taking some simple steps to ensure your plants survive in your absence…

  • Containers are most at risk in your garden, the sides start to warm up and dries up the compost more rapidly than in beds and borders. Try wrapping them in hessian sacking, tie it in place and soak it with water, this will keep the heat out.
  • Choose the right fertilizer, often plants in containers will need extra feeding. Use a potash feed instead of a  feed high in nitrogen, it will encourage greenary rather than flowers.
  • Before you go, remove all the blooms from your containers, not just the faded ones. This should conserve the plants’ energy and hopefully will mean that new blooms will have emerged by the time you return home
  • Group pots together and create a microclimate. The pots will cast shade on each other, providing a cooler atmosphere. It also makes it easier to water plants, the water will splash between them.
  • Stand your pots on saucers to collect any rain water that hasn’t been fully absorbed. The plants will be able to drink this water later when they need it.
  • Put houseplants in the sink and fill with a small amount of water, this will keep your plants damp while your away.
  • Cover your compost with mulch, this is a brilliant way to retain moisture. Use organic materials such as bark chips, shredded straw and plant debri.
  • Cover pot plants with fleece, this protects your plants from pests, frost, drought and heat. Lay it over your grouped plants and tuck under their bases to keep them covered.
Well-established plants in borders shouldn’t suffer too much, as their roots will be deep enough to find some moisture in the soil.  As for fruit and veg, as long as you have harvested as much as you can before you go away they should survive. Give your veg a good soaking before you go, blanch and freeze what you can’t use, or give it to your friends, family or a  neighbour who may return the favour with a bit of watering in your absence.
Let us know how you have holiday-proofed your garden! Send your comments and photographs to us at gardenersblog@jerseyplantsdirect.com or simply post them on our Facebook wall here!

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