May is here! Summer has well and truly left us. But that doesn't mean that your garden can't be productive.
1. Tidy up
Now that the cooler days are here most of your summer crops will have died back. Remove all the dead or dying plants and tidy up your patch. This prevents pests and diseases but also ensures air circulation for the plants who are still growing.
2. Snail patrol
Snails and slugs like the cooler and wetter weather. Never leave a snail alive! But I do not advocate for snail bait. Instead kill on sight, copper tape and egg shells will keep them at bay, as well as removing any hiding places like dead leaves. Let the sunshine in and the snails will move away.
3. Succession planting
Last month I recommended succession planting to keep a continuous supply of crops. Do this again now and once more before the end of the month. Carrots, beetroot, radishes, turnips, swedes and lettuces are great for this.
4. Green manure
If you are not planning on planting out your garden this winter then I highly recommend planting green manure. You can buy the seeds online or at nurseries or DIY it. Green manure is made from all the left over seeds from the season like lettuce, peas and brassicas. You let these seeds grow and then turn them into the soil to die and rot in late July and August. These crops add nutrients back into the soil, especially nitrogen. It is also nice to look at lush garden beds and not bare ones over winter.
Whether you are planting your garden with crops or green manure make space for some flowers. Borage, calendula, cornflowers and cosmos do well in the cooler months and are frost tolerant. They also attract beneficial insects and feed the hungry bees in the early spring. Don't forget to check out my free online course on how to attract bees to your garden in all four seasons!