Sarah’s Seasonal Gardening Tips: August

Today on Bishopston Mum is a post all about August from my local friend and keen gardener, Sarah Clapham.

Sarah has prepared some gardening and nature tips for the month, including what to look out for when you are out and about with your children.

I’ll let Sarah take over from here. Enjoy!

In the garden…

Enjoy all your hard work! The rate at which the grass and weeds grow should begin to slow which means a little less work for you.

If it’s been dry keep watering and feeding hungry plants especially those in containers.

Deadhead annuals and other flowering plants.

Cut back perennial plants after flowering. You may wish to leave some though as they can be really attractive e.g. alliums and verbena.

Once lavender has flowered cut back to the fresh looking foliage.

On the veg patch…

Many of your crops should be ready to harvest this month and you may find yourself with gluts (turn to cookery books for ideas on how to preserve spare fruit and veg).

Think about how you will water and harvest if you are going away. Friends and family may be willing to help out in return for some fresh runner beans!

Harvest courgette and runner beans regularly when small and tender. If runner beans get too big they become tough and stringy. A courgette plant will produce more fruits if they are picked often rather than being left to turn into giants!

Feed pumpkin and squash if you want good crops in the autumn.

Dry out onions, garlic and shallots so they can be stored for winter.

Pinch out and feed tomatoes.

Summer prune gooseberries, currants and summer fruiting raspberries.

Things to look our for…

Elderberries are ripening the birds love them.  There are plenty of recipes on the internet if you fancy harvesting some yourself, elderberry wine or jam anyone? (ensure you identify anything you pick correctly, if you are unsure do not eat).

Look out for ripening sloes and rose hips. Again the birds will feast on these as other food becomes less abundant but we also can enjoy them in various ways once ripe.

You may see House Martins and swallows swooping through the air this month particularly over fields of crops. The Swift will begin it’s migration from our shores this month demonstrating the passing of the season.

See if you can learn to identify the difference between these birds.

Have a wonderful summer 😊