Welcome to your one-stop resource for quick and easy gardening jobs for June. If you always feel like you don’t have enough time for gardening, or just need some guidance on what to focus on each month, this is the series for you!
You can check out my garden jobs for every other month in this post.
Gardening in June
With everything growing so fast this month, I think the ‘little and often’ approach is best for gardening in June. Keeping on top of the garden through little jobs seems to keep everything looking good much more effectively than carving out a few hours to blitz it.
Here’s what to do in the garden in June.
Plant summer bedding
This is the perfect time of year to give your garden a shot of colour with summer flowering bedding plants. These are really great for an instant display in containers, borders and hanging baskets. Supermarkets, garden centres and DIY stores all usually have lots of bedding plants at this time of year.
If you’re planting in containers and baskets, try to use good quality *compost, and remember to feed your plants with suitable *outdoor plant food, because they will quickly exhaust the nutrients in their soil.
Get the watering right
Watering effectively can make all the difference to the health of your plants. Don’t waste time watering little and often; doing this encourages weeds, and can also cause plants to make roots near the surface, which makes them vulnerable.
Instead, water the soil around plants really thoroughly, making little ponds around them, so the water can really soak in. Watering this way supports plants for much longer, so you should need to water less often – giving you more time to sit back and enjoy your garden!
For more tips on effective garden watering in summer, check out this post.
Protect plants from slugs & snails
Poor old slugs and snails, they really don’t get much love from us gardeners do they?! Just a couple of them can destroy a batch of seedlings or salad overnight, and it can be really difficult to keep on top of them.
There are lots of ways you can try and control slugs and snails in your garden; broken eggshells, beer traps, *copper barriers, and slug pellets, to name but a few. If you do decide to use slug pellets, try to go for *metaldehyde-free ones which have less impact on wildlife and the environment.
I’ve found one of the best ways to deal with slugs and snails is to regularly check pots and vulnerable plants, moving any culprits far away to another part of the garden – or, if you’re feeling merciless, out in an open space for the birds to snack on. I can never bring myself to do this though!
Deadhead your flowers
Having spent precious time and money coaxing your plants to grow, it’s well worth encouraging them to produce as many flowers as possible.
Deadheading is simply removing any flowers that are drooping, dead or forming seed heads. Doing this prevents the plant setting seed, so it produces more flowers.
To deadhead your plants, all you need to do is pinch or snip off the old flower heads. You can use your fingers, but I find that *snips make the job much quicker.
Deadheading is the sort of summer gardening job that you can potter away at whenever you have a spare minute. It’s a great one to get the kids helping with too; make sure they use their fingers to pinch the flowers off though, as snips and secateurs can be very sharp.
Look after wild bird visitors
Don’t assume wild birds don’t need your support in the garden during the summer months. Birds breed in spring and early summer, so by this time of year they are feeding their young and very glad of a source of energy-rich food. You’re also giving them a great start on building their reserves for the colder weather later in the year.
Try also to provide your local wild birds with a source of water, this is a real lifeline during hot weather. Position this out of reach of local cats, and remember to keep topping it up.
Keep on top of weeds
If your plants are growing fast this month, chances are the weeds will be too! It’s a really good idea to try and tackle weeds regularly in summer; this will ensure they don’t get too established, or start to spread seed.
Spend a few minutes weeding every few days, and you’ll avoid a big, boring garden chore. This approach will also keep the garden looking neat and tidy.
Spring and autumn are the main times of year for lawn maintenance, but there are some things you can do this month to keep it looking good.
If the weather has been really dry, raise the blades on your lawnmower a bit. This will put less strain on parched grass which is already struggling.
If the weather hasn’t been very warm, your lawn is probably growing quickly this month. Mowing it regularly will encourage it to grow thicker. Trimming the edges of your lawn is also a quick and easy way to make it look better.
You can also apply *lawn feed to encourage lush, green growth. Avoid doing this if the weather is really hot, as stressed grass is more susceptible to damage from fertilisers. If you do apply feed, water it in if it doesn’t rain within a couple of days of application.
Don’t worry too much if your lawn is looking pretty yellow this month. Even the most parched grass will recover once the rain comes.
June is a good time to thin out the oldest stems on spring-flowering shrubs. This will allow more air and light into the plant, and encourage new shoots to grow. Use *secateurs to cut at the base of the shrub, focusing on old, damaged and weak stems.
Evergreen hedges such as box, privet and yew can be lightly trimmed this month to keep them looking smart.
Check any trees in the garden for dead wood this month. It’s easy to spot bare branches now because they contrast clearly with living wood, which will have leaves on it. Remove any bare branches carefully; you may need to call in the professionals if you don’t have suitable ladders or safety equipment.
You can also have a go at the ‘Chelsea Chop’ on herbaceous perennials such as rudbeckias, heleniums, phlox, echinacea and delphiniums. This is usually done around the time of the Chelsea Flower Show – hence the name – and involves reducing the plant’s height by between a third and a half. Doing this encourages the plant to grow more side shoots, this makes it sturdier and also results in more flowers. It feels drastic, but it works! If you’re not feeling brave enough to chop all of your plants, just doing a few will still extend the flowering period.
What to plant in June
There are so many plants you can get started in June, including flowers, fruit, vegetables and herbs. For a full list of options head over to my post on what to plant in June.
I think we’re all going to be busy in the garden this month! What’s on your list for gardening in June?