The August garden

August 3rd 2017
By: Melanie Hollidge
The August garden

August is the last true month of summer in your St Albans garden.  It is a time when the veg plot is usually at its best. There is still time to sow quick growing salad crops such as lettuce, rocket and radish. It is also the time of year to keep up with dead heading your flowers so they can keep blooming well into September as the later flowers come to their peak.
 
It is important to keep picking your veg, in a similar way to deadheading flowers it encourages continued flowering and fruiting and so will deliver a better overall crop. The trouble is that August is also the time of year so many of us go on holiday. After all the hard work of growing plants, particularly vegetable it is a shame to miss the moment when the beans, courgettes and salads are at their peak. So if you are going on holiday you need to find someone look after the garden, to pick and water for you especially if you have any plants in containers.
 
If August is particularly warm and you have a greenhouse full of tomatoes it is important to stop it from overheating. Damping down the greenhouse helps to control temperatures so after normal watering you can finish off by watering the floor which provides cooling by evaporation. This is best done in the morning to keep the greenhouse cool for the high daytime temperatures. That way your tomato crop will be ripe for the picking on your return from holiday.