June Gardening Hints and Tips

We have had a late Spring this year (2021), with drought and frost holding plants back.  I note that last year, at this time, I remarked on the good set of apples and pears; whereas, this year, the apple blossom is barely out yet.  I did spot a woodpecker (spotted) tearing some blossom off…such a help; but I was pleased to see it, as they do not seem as common as they were!

There are still jobs that must be done in hope of kind weather continuing… here are some suggestions:

Ornamental garden

  • Gently remove spent flowers from Camellia and rhododendrons to make room for the leaf buds emerging behind. You can also trim back overgrown shoots to make the shrubs more compact, next year’s flower buds will form on the new growth of side shoots that this stimulates.
  • Divide bearded irises after flowering; plant with the rhizomes facing south.
  • Sow biennials like sweet William, viola and wallflowers
  • Divide spring-flowering bulbs.
  • Remove spent flower heads of Euphorbia by cutting flowered stems to ground level. Wear gloves for this, the sap causes skin irritation.


  • Mow regularly but, if it is hot and dry, raise the cutting height.
  • Apply a high-nitrogen lawn feed (again not when dry)
  • Add clippings to the compost heap in small amounts; mix them with dry material to stop it all going slimy.

Kitchen garden

  • Pinch out side shoots of cordon tomatoes
  • Plant out pumpkins, squashes, courgettes and beans. You could direct sow both these and sweetcorn.
  • Because sweetcorn is wind pollinated, do not plant them in a row but in a block, so the pollen gets to the stigmas of neighbouring plants.
  • Harvest early potatoes when they begin flowering
  • Sow autumn carrots.
  • Net Strawberries and brassicas against birds.
  • Sorry! But stop cutting asparagus and feed it so the crowns are ready for next year


  • Damp down the greenhouse floor to increase humidity and discourage red spider mite
  • Feed tomatoes with a high-potassium fertiliser

Open gardens

Most gardens that open for National Garden Scheme, RHS and National Trust Gardens to Visit opened their doors in May; but do check their websites for confirmation of their arrangements. NGS garden visits have to be booked in advance.

Crondall Open Gardens is scheduled for 27th June.