As spring bulbs start to fade and the last of the frosts are finishing up, this is the month to really get going on sowing and planting. Here are just a few key gardening jobs for May.
Now that the ground has warmed up, you can start planting seeds and seedlings in full force. Pretty much everything can go out now, whether you’re direct sowing or popping in those seedlings you started off in the greenhouse. To help those seedlings, remember to water regularly in the morning and evening when dry. Successional sowing is the best way to give yourself a regular supply of vegetables, so don’t plant all the seeds at once and do put quick growing seeds in to maximise growing space; radishes and salad leaves are perfect for this.
With the weather warming up, you will need to keep an eye on weeds, which love the May climate and can take over if not kept at bay. It’s best to pull weeds up while they’re young, so that they don’t form long roots. Weeding once a week will easily keep on top of them and hoes are great for pulling them quickly off the top soil. Weed killers work best for paths where the weeds are trickier to get at.
There are lots of little regular jobs you can be doing this month too such as remembering to open your greenhouse up to air on particularly warm days or if you’ve kept some plants indoors, start hardening them off by taking them outside each day for air and sunshine. The grass will be growing quickly with the warm weather, so you may need to mow the lawn once a week to keep on top of it. Remove blanket weed and algae from your pond to increase oxygen, light and help pond life.
I love creating beautiful flower basket displays and this month is the perfect time to give it a go. You can pick up hanging baskets from all gardening centres but all you really need is a wire frame filled with a pre-made coconut fibre liner. Fill it with container compost and water crystals to help contain the water through the dryer months. Plant a range of flowers, including trailing plants such lobelias and petunias. Geraniums also grow well in hanging baskets because they don’t need much water. Main thing is to have fun with the plants you choose!