Its the time of year when so many of the perennials are in flower at the nursery, there is such a wide variety of colour, we usually give them a summer feed around this time, we either use a slow release feed by hand, sprinkling it around the base of the soil or for some of the plants we mix in a soluble feed in with the watering system. You want to make sure you follow the dosage instructions on the packet, if you overfeed plants it can do them more harm than good.
I missed the deadline for last month's article, we were very busy at the powderham castle garden festival with our stand and we were even asked to do a talk on succulents. It was lovely to have a bit of normality after what has been a strange time for all.
We came back from another plant fair recently with more plants for ourselves, a new variety of Brugmansia from a specialist grower in Chudleigh, Carnivorous pitcher plants and some real exotics from a grower of tropical plants in Dorset. The pitcher plants have proved very popular in the tunnel, the flys seem to be loving them and I think we’ll be making yet another personal corner in the tunnel for them to live.
We’ve been having a tidy up around the nursery, particularly with the Climbers, the clematis in particular have grown like mad, and a few needed tidying up and tying in to the mini trellis we grow them up.
It's been a fantastic year for Aphids this year, as they have had the perfect conditions to get quite a large population going, they’ve been able to build up quite a lot in numbers before the natural predators have gotten going. Ladybirds, Earwigs and Hoverflys are some of the natural predators that you should encourage to help keep on top of the problem before resorting to sprays.
It's also been a bumper year for slugs, with the levels of them at their highest level since 2018 according to the RHS. Nematodes for Vineweevil are always something to treat your garden with, but nematodes for slug as a natural pest control are a great way of controlling them without having to resort to pellets.
While our succulents are in active growth its a perfect time to repot, these have been repotted then moved outside for the summer, they won't survive a UK winter outside but during the summer the cooler temperatures and extra water means they grow like mad