Last week I was totally engrossed by the coverage of the RHS Chelsea Flower Show on television. Whatever the size of your outdoor space it provides so much inspiration for ideas to use yourself. I was particularly taken by Jekka McVicar's A Modern Apothecary Garden. For some time I have wanted a structured herb garden. My problem is the spot has been overtaken by an ever expanding rosemary bush! Once it has stopped flowering I'm going to tidy it up and get it looking much smarter. If you need some tips for making the most of your garden this summer take a look at today's guest post.
“The British winter can be very hard on gardens and bringing them back to life in preparation for the long-awaited, warm and hazy days ahead can seem like a daunting task, but this guide makes it easy.
We've put together six simple steps that you can work through over the coming weeks to get your garden summer ready, including expert advice on pruning from the Royal Horticultural Society, wildlife tips from the RSPB and ideas for entertaining from the Stove Site.
Step 1: Maintain the Hardware
Give fence panels, decking or sheds a new lease of life with a lick of outdoor paint or varnish; you will find a variety of colours and finishes available in most DIY outlets. They'll look good as new and provide the perfect backdrop for your flora, fauna and get-togethers with family and friends.
Step 2: Pruning and Weeding
To get the best from your garden you have to nurture nature and you can do that by pruning and weeding. This is the perfect time of year for cutting back ornamental grasses, perennials, evergreens and flowers.
By removing any dead heads, crowded stems and nutrient sapping weeds, you can promote new, healthy growth. If you need detailed advice on how to prune and care for a specific plant, shrub or tree, step-by- step guides are available on the Royal Horticultural Society website.
Step 3: Lawncare
Getting your lawn ready for family games or a spot of sunbathing means giving it a little TLC now. Mow the grass, tidy the borders and remove any moss or weeds by hand or by using a purpose made lawn treatment.
To repair sparse or bald patches and get your lawn looking lush, break up the soil, rake, and then sprinkle generously with grass seed. If you’re lucky enough to enjoy birdlife in your garden, you may need to cover new seeds with a net.
Step 4: Planting
Add colour and fragrance to your garden with new plants or herbs located in beds and borders, but also in colourful pots and planters.
If you're short on space, use hanging baskets or those which can be mounted on walls or fence panels.
Step 5: Attracting Wildlife
Flowering plants like Buddleia, Foxgloves and Forget-me-nots will attract butterflies and bees to your garden while water tables and feeders can be used to attract birds. You can order a free pack that's filled with simple tips to 'Give Nature a Home' in your garden, directly from the RSPB.
Step 6: Make it Comfortable
Now that you've done all the hard work, it's time to add a few creature comforts to make your garden an inviting space to play, dine and relax in.
Garden furniture including benches, hammocks, recliners and dining tables are now widely available to suit almost any budget from high-street retail outlets. Add some finishing touches with a few little extras like solar-powered lighting, cushions or throws.
If you're hoping to entertain guests or simply extend your garden time long into the evenings, you will need a BBQ, fire pit or better yet, a quality outdoor oven that gives you the flexibility to cook and stay warm outside.
Stove Site is a leading UK supplier, stock a fantastic selection of garden stoves, fire bowls, chimeneas and grills suitable for any outdoor space.”
Have you been inspired by the RHS Chelsea Flower Show? What would you like to add to your outdoor space this summer?