As the summer season is under way we thought we’d start up a blog and treat you to some gardening tips to help you make the most of your garden.

The recent sunshine means that many flowers are coming into full bloom, brightening up our outside spaces and drawing us into our gardens. If you have a sunny spot in your garden, make sure that the plants you choose for this area can cope with hot sun. Some plants love the sunshine, such as perennials with deep roots, but others will wilt and suffer in full sun. Select shady areas of your garden for new plants or annuals to give them time to adapt to the climate. If you’re unsure, ask us when we next visit your garden and we will be happy to offer advice on which plants are best suited to heat and humidity and which prefer lower temperatures.

Roses are among those in full bloom this month. Check for black spot on petals and attacks from garden pests such as aphids, tiny pink and green insects that live underneath rose bush leaves. Aphid infestations are harmful and can cause serious damage to roses. For small populations of aphid you can squash them with your finger, but larger populations should be treated straight away. This also applies to black spot, a fungal disease. Dead or faded rose flowers should be deadheaded to allow for fresh growth and weed prevention will help the rose bush flourish by allowing maximum moisture from the soil. We can help with this on our next visit so make sure you let us know if you have any concerns about your roses or need some extra weeding.

Be careful to check for other pesky pests that can damage your plants and prevent flowering, such as the lily leaf beetle. Lily leaf beetles are bright red and around a ¼” long and are extremely fast, making them difficult to catch. Adults emerge during April and June so look out for eggs on your lily plants. Ideally you should check them twice weekly and remove any beetles by crushing them or dropping in hot soapy water. The tiny eggs can be found underneath the leaf, laid in rows and orange-brown in colour. Larvae hatch after around 2 weeks and are small and slug like. It’s equally important to remove the larvae too. It takes up to a month for them to turn into adult beetles that will feed from your plant and cause damage. Unlike lilies, many plants can cope with this and will generate new growth, but with lilies, that’s it for the season and in some cases they can struggle to return the following year.

Have you got any questions about your garden?

Always wondered how to master something or what time of year is the best to manage different task in your garden? Just want to know more about a particular topic?

Email your question to me at @askthomas / @asklawnrangers and we’ll do the best to cover it for you in our next blog.