Task of the Month

Our horticultural experts are on hand to give you monthly advice on what to do now! We'll help you tackle tasks one month at a time to get your garden in tip top shape all year round.

August

Top Tip

To make your containers and baskets continue to flourish well into October do the following:

1 Dead head (remove old flowers) all the flowering plants back to were there is fresh growth for successive flowering. Do this often.

2 Feed with a high potash liquid feed (try tomato feed) at least once a week

3 Water copiously in dry spells as the plants will be fully rooted through the compost and can dry out overnight. Place saucers under containers to hold extra moisture and if you can submerge your hanging basket in a large container of water so as it is soaked through.

Enjoy August in your garden.

August is the traditional holiday period of the summer so make preparations if you are going away. You may well get drought periods this month so take heed from the top tip below to keep your containers and baskets at their best. Take time to enjoy your garden in August but remember it is a great month for sowing autumn and winter crops.

Outdoors

In your vegetable garden you can now sow late season and hardy winter crops. Prepare the ground as in the spring adding in plenty more Bord na Móna Growise Farmyard Manure or Bord na Móna Growise Enriched Topsoil. As you crop an area it is essential to do this so as to keep the soil rich in organic material. You can also add a fresh sprinkling of Bord na Móna Growise Chicken Manure. Prepare the soil to a fine tilt ready for sowing. You can still sow the following for late summer and Autumn- rocket, carrots (Early Nantes a fast growing variety), turnips, baby leaf salads, radish, spinach and peas. The secret with these is good autumn weather and early fast maturing varieties. Longer term overwintering crops for spring/early summer harvesting to sow are Japanese onions-sow the seeds now or sets in October, spring cauliflower and winter sprouting broccoli, winter chicory and spring cabbages.

Plant up a container using Bord na Móna Growise Tub & Basket Compost with a selection of herbs. A big advantage of this is that tender ones can be put in a sheltered site or moved indoors for winter. Use mixed thyme, basil, rosemary, sage, golden marjoram, feverfew and if it is a big container use a bay leaf as a centrepiece. Place it outside the kitchen for quick convenient picking.

August is the best month to plant spring flowering bulbs such as daffodils and narcissi as they will be well established by spring. Leave planting tulips until October.

Spring bedding will now be available from garden centres. Plant winter pansy and viola, bellis, wallflowers and primrose plants should be available soon. Use plenty of fresh Bord na Móna Growise Premium Multipurpose with John Innes when planting all autumn bedding and bulbs.

In The Greenhouse

The glasshouse will be a quieter place this month. All your early sowings will be harvested and really outdoors is better at this time of year and easier to manage. Your glasshouse is invaluable from February to June and again in September to January for overwintering tender plants.

Any plants like tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers will need plenty of water. You will also need to remove lower leaves to leave as much light in to ripen everything and feed weekly with tomato liquid feed.

Brendan Howell

Bord na Móna Horticulturist

How Does Your Garden Grow?

Gardening should be fun, but often people are afraid of getting things wrong, and too worried to give it a go.

That’s where we come in – we’ve got simple tasks for improving your garden, laid out month by month. Just follow along and soon you’ll have a beautiful garden, and the satisfaction of knowing you did it all yourself. If you’d like a more practical garden, why not use your outdoor space to grow your own fruits and vegetables?

Our growbags and simple instructions take all the guesswork out of it, and you’ll be reaping the rewards in no time!