Summer is right around the corner, and many Britons will likely be lolling away the days in the garden. Even if you’re only just getting your green thumb back into action this weekend, there is still time to get flowers planted in time for the sunnier days.
Colin Grey, managing director at Lavender Green Gardens told Express.co.uk: “June is the perfect time to host a garden party or gathering outside. Let the flowers become the central theme, creating an elegant but impressive ‘look’ for your event however large or small.
“You can create a pallet of natural blues and purples easily, with so many flowers coming into season in early summer to choose from, and it is not too late to plant them.”
He recommends heading to your local garden centre and looking for “early summer perennials”. These can be planted straight into the ground at purchase.
Mr Grey recommends opting for “delphiniums, late-season peonies, astrantia, evening primrose oenothera stricta, iris ensanta, rose queen and eryngium”, many of which blossom in pretty shades of blue, purple and white.
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However, there are also plenty of blooms that can be sown from seeds before the end of April.
Speaking to Express.co.uk Marcus Eyles Horticultural Director at Dobbies said: “Whether you’re looking to refresh your pots for the warmer months or add a pop of colour to your beds and borders, there are plenty of great options to bring life back into your garden this spring.
“Early spring bedding plants such as pansies, violas and sinetti will add instant colour to your containers and hanging baskets and create a beautiful display.
“April is also a fantastic time to plant summer flowering bulbs such as dahlias and begonias for a burst of colour in the summer months.”
Each specific variety of flower has its own unique care requirements, though, so it is important to research the needs of each flower.
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Mr Eyeles explained: “When refreshing containers with spring bedding plants like pansies, violas and sinetti make sure you prepare your tubs and baskets first by pulling up any tired winter bedding plants that have come to an end.
“Then, fill your container of choice with peat-free compost to give your plants the nutrients they need, and ensure you water regularly to keep the compost moist throughout the growing season.
“When planting summer flowering bulbs like dahlias and begonias in the ground, ensure you hoe borders to remove weeds and apply a good layer of mulch over the surface to lock in moisture and help keep weeds at bay before planting your bulbs.”
According to Mr Grey, of Lavender Green Gardens, there are even some straight forward options for novice gardeners.
He explained: “Sew some wildflowers now too, that will then come in to bloom before June. Pick British annuals such as cornflower, campanula and digitalis.”
Wildflower mixes can often be purchased in packets and can be easily scattered over bare patches of watered soil.
How can you protect your summer flowers from pests?
Garden pests are all part of the ecosystem of your garden but can cause havoc for abundant blooms.
Mr Eyeles said: “To protect your spring new plants from slugs, you can use our organic slug control barrier pellets, which are not harmful to pets or the environment.”
However, there are also more organic ways of dealing with slugs too.
The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) recommends planting “sacrificial plants” near your beloved flowers, that might take slugs’ fancy.
Jamie Shipley, managing director at Hedges Direct said: “Although the RHS provide advice on methods of control, both natural and chemical, they are now encouraging gardeners to work with them, for example by planting sacrificial plants that slugs and snails like to eat so that others are left alone, or choosing plants that aren’t as attractive to them.
“It’s the same way that a lot of gardeners will plant Marigolds to ward off insects such as greenflies and black flies from vegetable crops, which don’t like the odours the flowers emit.”