In the garden:
As the final threat of frost passes – in all but the most extreme seasons – plant out your summer bedding plants.
Bluebells and snowdrops can be lifted and the clumps divided to create more plants. Dig well away from the plants to keep the bulbs safe. You can take off any remaining flowers to allow the plant to concentrate its energy production into the bulb for next year.
Continue to pinch out the shoots in fuchsias to encourage bushy growth with more flowers.
If you planted up your hanging baskets in the greenhouse earlier in the season, you should be able to move them outside this month.
The more you pick sweet peas, the more flowers will come – always have a vaseful in the kitchen if you can.
Climbers like clematis and honeysuckle will need tying in as they send up new shoots.
Fruit and veg:
Pinch out the side shoots in tomato plants with the exception of tumbling varieties. This will send them pushing upwards. Make sure your plants have enough support, remembering that fruit will add a lot of weight when it comes.
Once the leaves start to die back on your garlic and onions you can start to harvest and enjoy them. Both keep well after drying, either in the sun or in a dry shed or garage.
Your fruit should be starting to ripen, and the birds will have their eyes on it. Put up netting on bushes and trees. Keep it taught so the raiders don’t get caught in it and keep checking it for damage through the season.
Salad crops should be starting to produce. Many of them can be treated as a cut-and-come-again buffet while still young. If you want more, simply sow another row or patch of fast-growing salads every couple of weeks.
Strawberry runners can be fastened in place on the ground, where they will produce a new plant for next season. Strawberries are very good at propagating themselves, so if you have enough, they are spreading too far or over-crowding then remove the runners completely.
White powdery mildew can be a problem at this time of year. Cut out any infected stems or leaves and use a fungicide. Making sure your plants have enough water and helping the soil retain water with mulches can help prevent this nasty infection.
Its aphid time too. Spray with insecticide to stop them multiplying, but avoid spraying plants in flower as you may harm pollinating insects too. Gardening to encourage wildlife will help promote a number of the aphid’s natural predators.
Turn your compost heaps or bins every month. This will get oxygen into your compost and should speed up the rate of decay into a beautiful substance you can use in your garden.
Look after your water supplies if it’s a dry summer. Mulching will cut down on watering and a water butt or other rain collection systems will save you from turning the tap on to fill your watering can.
If your greenhouse is in full sun, use shading to protect the plants inside from scorching.
Mow your lawn once a week. Keep your mower in good condition with sharpened blades to make the job easier.