This July gardening calendar has been put together by Mantis to help you make the most of your garden during the British summer. It follows on from the June calendar and a lot of the advice for June still applies in July. There are, however, plenty of new tasks you should carry out in July. Read on to find out more.
Lawn Care in July
Keep mowing the lawn – It will need doing once a week, but don’t cut it too low in case of dry spells. Leaving it a little longer will protect the roots from scorching and will help to trap moisture.
Water lawn – If there are no hosepipe bans, keep the lawn watered during dry spells.
Apply weed killer – Weeds will be growing rapidly at this time of year and will be fighting the grass for the moisture and nutrients, so you need to keep on top of them.
Feed the lawn – This is the last chance to add a summer feed to the lawn to ensure a lovely green lawn through Autumn.
Keep edges tidy – Edge the lawn regularly to ensure a neat and tidy look.
Use grass cuttings as mulch – When mowing, leave the grass cuttings on the lawn as this will act as a mulch and give your grass some extra moisture.
If your lawn needs a lot of work, you may like to invest in a lawn care attachment package for your tiller. The right tools make the job as quick as possible, letting you enjoy the summer.
Garden Care in July
Containers – Look after hanging baskets and containers – You will need to water these very regularly, especially during dry spells, at least once a day, and remember to feed them every 2 – 4 weeks.
Remove dead flowers to encourage regrowth – This will keep them flowering throughout the summer.
Keep borders tidy – Cut back faded growth on perennials and dead head annuals to encourage regrowth.
Dead head roses – once blooms have faded, remove them just below the head to encourage further blooms to appear and to keep them looking tidy.
Tidy up sweet peas – Remove faded flowers to keep them flowering all summer. Remember to water them every day in dry weather.
Keep an eye on clematis – This is the time of year that they can be affected by Clematis Wilt. If you spot this, remove as much of the blackened leaves and stems as possible to prevent it spreading.
Keep adding to your compost – Any cuttings from plants and from the grass can be placed in your compost heap or your Mantis ComposTumbler, which is ideal for processing compost quickly and efficiently. Ensure that you dry out any weeds thoroughly before throwing these in as if you don’t, they may seed again once you put them on the beds.
Look out for the lily beetle – If you see any of these bright red beetles on your lily plants, remove them and crush them. Check for grubs on the underside of leaves and remove these before they hatch.
Fruit & Veg in July
Harvest your veg – There are lots of vegetables that will now be ready for harvesting, such as carrots, peas, potatoes, beetroot, tomatoes, lettuce and other salad veg such as radishes. Radishes, however, will need to be taken out of the ground as soon as they ripen, as they will start to rot very quickly.
Pick courgettes and marrows – Do this regularly to encourage them to produce more fruit and keep you topped up all summer.
Harvest your herbs – You can be drying out your herbs now and freezing them for later use. Pinching out the flowers will also enable your plants to bush up and out giving you more to pick.
Pinch outside shoots of tomatoes – Doing this will ensure that the nutrients are concentrated in the fruits. Also, clearing some of the leaves from around fruit will help to aerate the fruit and prevent disease.
Keep on top of weeds around your vegetable plants – Hoeing in between rows regularly will stop weeds from taking hold.
Sow some more plants – You can still sow some new plants in July – beetroot, carrots, lettuce, radish and runner beans can be sown directly into their final positions.
Thin out fruit trees – Take out fruitlets from bunches, leaving the healthiest to develop into ripened fruit.
Thin out seedlings – Removing some of the weaker plants will ensure that the healthier ones produce a better yield.
Continue earthing up potatoes – This prevents the potatoes going green when the light gets to them.
End of the rhubarb season – You should stop pulling rhubarb by the end of this month in order for it to bulk up at the crown and conserve some energy for next year’s crop. After July the stems will start losing their sweetness anyway and may become bitter, so make the most of it this month and then leave your rhubarb alone from August onwards.
Other Gardening Activities in July
Keep an eye on ponds during the summer – You may need to top up the water as it will evaporate during very warm weather. If you have a water butt, use the water from this as it is natural and will not contain any chemicals that might interfere with the nutrient balance in the water.
Remove blanket weed – You can do this by swirling it around with a stick and it will wrap itself around making it easier to remove. Also keep an eye on your water lilies and remove any yellowing or dying leaves and flowers. Don’t forget that you can add these to your compost.
Keep water pumps and filter clear.
Look out for powdery mildews – It appears as white/grey patches on leaves and is host specific (that is, it doesn’t attack all plants and different strains attack different plant species). It is mostly due to weather and most strains like dry, though humid conditions as opposed to wet conditions. The best way to treat powdery mildew is to remove all affected areas of the plant, and if it really takes hold, ask your garden centre to advise on a fungiside that includes sulphur, neem oil, triforine or potassium bicarbonate. The inclusion of one of these compounds depends on the host plant.
Remember to deadhead container flowers – This ensures a continuous display throughout the later summer months and keep watering them daily as they are depending on you for this during the dryer months.
July is the peak of summer and your garden will be at its best. However, as everything grows so fast, you need to watch out for weeds, fungus and pests, as well as making sure there is enough water and nutrients to sustain your plants and your lawn. If you have hedges, they will be at their biggest and messiest, so give them a trim with a hedge trimmer (Mantis’s cordless hedge trimmer is available here). Enjoy your summer garden and remember that the more you give the more you’ll get out of it. Get in touch with the team here at Mantis if you have any questions regarding our products or this July gardening guide.