Article by Nick Rinylo
Getting reacquainted with your green thumb can be tricky after the long British winter. If you’re one of those people who batten down the hatches in the garden at the first hint of colder weather, your garden might be in pretty good shape. Or, if you don’t spend too much time caring for your garden, chances are it’s a bit of a hefty job and you might not know where to start.
If you’re furloughed, not working, or working from home at the moment, there’s no denying it feels like we’ve got a lot more free time. Whilst the weather is so beautiful, it feels like high time to crack on with some gardening jobs so that your garden feels like an extension of your home – especially whilst we’re still mostly confined to our homes and gardens!
Mower at the ready
We won’t pretend that mowing the grass doesn’t feel like a bit of a chore, but the winter months where you can just leave your grass alone are long gone. Over the summer it feels like you can mow your lawn, blink, and then the grass is knee high again.
It’s definitely harder work to mow a garden with long, unkempt grass, so staying on top of it should make light work of it. If you mow it before you look at it and think “wow, I need to cut the grass”, then it’s a quicker job. Take a crack at your lawn once or twice a week. If it’s been very dry, leave it for a few extra days.
Start a war on weeds
Weeds are pesky. As soon as the sun starts shining they start rearing their heads. They’ll pop up especially around the edges of your garden and through cracks in your patio. Trying to get rid of them is tough. Pulling them up sometimes only results in more growth, as it agitates the seeds left in the ground and exposes them to the sun. Killing them with chemical weed killers or bleach only hurts your grass and other plants.
Check out Good Housekeeping’s tips for naturally getting rid of weeds in your garden here.
Welcome the wildlife
If constantly mowing and trimming your garden is a bit much for you or you’re not a huge fan of the manicured lawn look, lean into #NoMowMay and leave your garden untrimmed in order to promote natural biodiversity.
This can make a garden a bit more like a wilderness than a functional outdoor space. If this is a worry for you, maybe use a strimmer to create pathways in the grass. If you’ve got pathways or a patio space built-in, keep those areas well maintained. This means you can still use your garden whilst appreciating the growing animal and insect presence in your garden.
We’re nearly halfway through the year now, but that doesn’t mean it’s too late to grow fruit and veggies. You can keep planting a lot of fruits and veggies until late July. Try these:
- Kale and spinach
- Lettuce and other salad greens and herbs
- Runner beans
- Courgettes, pumpkins and squashes
- Root veggies like carrots, beetroot and swedes
- Fruits like raspberries and strawberries.
If you want quick results, it’s best to settle already flowering fruit bushes and tomato plants. Other veggies might take a little more time.
Take a seat
No matter how much work you do on your garden and how many hours you spend mowing your lawn or killing your weeds, it can be tough to enjoy spending time in your garden when all you’ve got is a picnic blanket. Make your own space out in your garden so it feels like a real extension of your home. If you’ve got a large family, make sure there’s room for everyone to get comfy and grab yourself a daybed. Consider parasols to make shady areas where little ones can play out of the sun.
Outdoor lighting is a big part of being able to enjoy long summer evenings in your garden with the people you love, and whilst we can’t invite friends and family over at the moment, that doesn’t mean that you can’t find a little joy in making your outdoor space garden-party ready.
This presentation was brought to you by SkyLine Design UK, suppliers of premium quality all-weather outdoor furniture and lighting options.