Tag Archives: Jobs in the garden May

Getting the best from your garden in May

Getting the best from your garden in May

Thinking of doing some gardening this bank holiday weekend? Here’s a handy reminder of what type of garden tasks should be completed at this time of year….


Trees shrubs and flowers

  • Stay on top of weed growth by hoeing- ensure that the kitchen garden and ornamental garden is hoed often and efficiently
  • Plant summer bedding into containers with a good compost
  • Mulch beds and borders to improve the moisture of the soil and to prevent weed growth
  • Take cuttings of softwood from perennials such as Verbena, fuschia and geraniums to propagate for next year.
  • Regularly inspect plants for pests looking particularly at the underside of leaves and shoot tips
  • Cut back lavender plants by removing the old flower heads along with roughly 1 inch of new growth
  • Prune spring flowering shrubs that have finished flowering
  • Trim evergreen hedges that have overgrown
  • Ensure that tender and younger plants are covered or moved into a greenhouse if frost is forecast

Fruits, Vegetables and Herbs

  • Begin earthing up potatoes that were planted last month, do so as soon as they break through. Be careful not to harvest potatoes too earl; wait until there are fully visible flower trusses.
  • Mulch under strawberry plants to act as a barrier between the moist and damp soil and the plant; this should help to prevent snails and mould. Feed the strawberry plants once a fortnight with Tomorite.
  • Sow cauliflower and leeks that will be ready to eat in the winter.
  • Sow bean varieties in a sunny position in well drained soil.
  • Salad crops and coriander and parsley can all be sown in succession with about 10 days in between.
  • Asparagus can be harvested when ready; spears no taller than 20cm.
  • Harvest rhubarb by pulling at the stalks. Take between half and a third of the growth at one time, never any more than half.
  • Water newly planted fruit trees well and encourage them to fully establish themselves by removing fruits and blossoms; allowing them to focus on growth.
  • Protect fruit trees such as cherries from birds with netting.
  • Once frosts are truly over plant out tomatoes.
  • Take softwood cuttings of shrubby herbs.

Lawn, pond, greenhouse and wildlife

  • Mow the laws once every week and apply a spring lawn feed if you haven’t already done so earlier this year.
  • If you desire a short lawn, gradually reduce the height of your cut. Leave lawns that have been recently sown for at least 5-6 week
  • Keep the greenhouse aerated by allowing airflow on sunny days.

For everything you need to get the best results in your garden, visit one of our Exeter Garden Centres today.