June is just around the corner and with that brings a whole new set of responsibilities in the Garden. Don’t get me wrong, it’s likely my favourite month, but except for harvest season I find it the busiest. So far the recent weather has done spectacular things for my landscape, plants are thriving with the early warm temperatures (and my watering) and all is well on my plot. There are however subtle hints at things to come, leaves with telltale slug munch holes and Japanese beetle larvae being turned over in my veggie garden, foretelling potential peril just around the corner. This leads me to our blog this month, all about the diligent gardener’s June tasks.
Keep new plants well-watered
Despite recent temperatures the early part of May was unseasonably cold meaning most plants are still newly planted. It’s easy to think we can sit back on our laurels and trust that spring showers will assist in establishing new plants. I think with this summer we will see very little spring rain and this means we need to stay on top of watering. Water all new plants deeply every time you do. Wetting the soil 6-12” deep encourages roots to grow deeply.
If you haven’t already turned in some compost, manure or fish emulsion to your garden the time is now. Side dressing improves the quality of soil and healthy soil serves as a natural pest preventer making the plants stronger and less susceptible to blights.
Seek out Pests
Summer is for insects and fungus. Be vigilant! Check both sides of leaves for eggs and nymphs or signs of fungal damage and treat accordingly.
Deadhead / Prune
Several spring bushes, such as wisteria, will benefit from a light prune after they have lost their flowers, prune lightly immediately after to encourage next seasons growth or in some cases a second round of flowers in the fall. Deadheading ornamentals will encourage repeated and more vigorous growth. Ensure you know which plants are safe to trim back in this fashion as you would not want to cut off any of next year’s growth.