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Macclesfield Express - - LEISURE -

Fin­ish off plant­ing up summer con­tain­ers, but if you in­clude ten­der plants, make sure you shel­ter them or cover them with hor­ti­cul­tural fleece overnight if frost is fore­cast.

Shade green­houses with shade net­ting to stop them be­com­ing over­heated and keep the win­dows and doors open dur­ing the day­time.

Prop­a­gate mar­ginal plants from cut­tings in­clud­ing brook­lime (Veron­ica bec­ca­bunga) and wa­ter mint (Men­tha aquatic). In­sert cut­tings in pots of mud and place in a bowl filled with wa­ter so that it just cov­ers the sur­face of the pots. The cut­tings should root quickly.

Con­tinue sow­ing beet­root to pro­vide crops through­out the summer.

Con­tinue to har­vest as­para­gus.

Fill in gaps be­tween bor­der peren­ni­als by sow­ing the seeds of hardy an­nu­als straight into their flow­er­ing po­si­tions. Summer-flow­er­ing bulbs and fo­liage plants in pots will also add in­ter­est.

As tulips fade, snap off the dead heads be­fore they have a chance to make seed. This will help the bulbs con­cen­trate their energy on pro­duc­ing next year’s blooms.

Cut back cean­othus and other springflow­er­ing shrubs in­clud­ing for­sythia.

Give top­i­ary, such as box balls, a quick trim af­ter a surge in spring growth may have left them out of shape.

Watch out for lily bee­tle and pick them off be­fore they dam­age your lilies.

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