As I write this in June, my garden is very dry.  No rain for weeks.

Hoeing is a sure way to make it rain! – that, and cleaning the windows!

Still, the herbaceous border should be at its best – take a record of which plants need to be divided in the Autumn.

Currants, berries, potatoes, onions, peas and beans should be ready for picking and storing.

When garlic leaves turn yellow, lift the bulbs and dry in a single layer in a dry place.

Sow seeds for autumn and winter salads. 


Clip, snip and cut

  • Early summer flowering shrubs like Philadelphus: cut back flowered stems to a strong lower shoot and remove one fifth of the old woody stems.
  • Clip privet, box, yew, cypress and other ‘hedgy’ plants now the birds have finished nesting in them.
  • Cut long whippy shoots of Wisteria to 7 leaves from the main stem.
  • Prune out flowered stems of rambling roses; thin out the vigorous new growth and tie it in.
  • Summer-prune cordon or espalier apples and pears
  • Cut non-flowering side branches of grape vines to 5 leaves and fruit- bearing branches to 2 leaves beyond the fruit bunch.
  • Cut back hardy geraniums to the ground after the first flush of flowers to get fresh foliage and more flowers later on.
  • Dead-heading keeps perennials and bedding plants flowering for longer.
  • In August, trim lavender, leaving an inch (2.5cm) of new growth


  • Take semi-ripe cuttings from shrubs – use the current season’s growth, cut below a node, remove the soft tips and place in gritty compost.
  • Divide bearded irises and plant the young rhizomes 12inches(30cm) apart.
  • Use strawberry runners to supply new plants for next year
  • Collect seeds from perennials and hardy annuals as they ripen; store in paper envelopes (labelled!) in a cool dry place until spring

Floral Art
1st November 10:00 – 12:00 at Crookham Village WI Hall:  Eco-friendly flower arrangement in a pumpkin.
6th December 10:00 – 12:00 at the WI hall: Wreath making
contact Caroline Morris for further details:
Trading Shed opening extended until 21st October
There will be plants looking for good homes on all three weekends.

For your diary

July 15th is the time for the Dogmersfield Show

Church Crookham Garden Society has its annual show on 19th August .  Entry is free for members (£5 p.a) and associate members. You can find the schedule on their website or at the trading shed.

Gardens open for charity

1st and 2nd July: 26 Lower Newport Road, Aldershot GU12 4QD

Hook Cross Allotments RG27 9DB

9th and10th July: 1 Wogbarne Cottages, Rotherwick RG27 9BL

27th August: Thatched Cottage, Alton GU34 3EG

For more gardens open for charity, visit