summer garden

13 ways to get the most out of your summer garden

by Northern Life

Give your garden a summer of love

Summer is here, filled with the promise of lovely days enjoying your garden! It’s a time when our garden rewards us with a display of beautiful colour and stunning scent; it’s a haven, a place to relax, play, entertain and potter. With so much to offer you, make your outdoor room look amazing, decorate it as you would a room in your home so you can enjoy your summer garden all season! The experts at Tong Garden Centre share a few inspiring ways to help you get the most from your summer garden.

Add a focal point

Whether it’s a tranquil water feature, attractive garden ornament or a striking planting scheme, giving your garden a focal point is a great way to draw the eye or screen something less attractive. Steve Smith, plant buyer at Tong Garden Centre recommends adding a specimen tree to your garden or planting in blocks of colour using a mix of plants with year round interest that will look good throughout the changing seasons. The team in store at Tong can help you achieve this.

Create a cosy corner

For your summer garden to really work, then zoning it to meet your needs is an easy way to ensure you get the best from your garden and we’d always recommend you include a tranquil, calm space to relax. “This year ITV’s Love Your Garden presenter Katie Rushworth has designed a Show Garden at Tong, and it’s a really clever use of space.” Says Centre Manager Andy Mears. “In addition to the stunning planting, Katie has included a dining area, kid’s sandpit and a lovely relaxing corner with an arbour seat and calming water feature.”

Dine alfresco

There’s something wonderful about dining outdoors, reminding us of holidays in the sun and family time sharing delicious food. Style your garden to include the on trend weatherproof resin weaves and your garden furniture can remain outdoors whatever the weather! Look for the relaxed dining sets that boast corner sofas and benches as well as dining tables with comfortable chairs that look stylish and modern in your summer garden.

Create a warm glow

There’s nothing nicer than extending the day and relaxing or entertaining family and friends as the sun sets! You can brighten your borders and patio with solar powered lighting and
lanterns remain an ever popular way to create an instantly cosy atmosphere. For warmth, nothing beats a chimenea or firepit as the evening air cools. At Tong, you’ll also find a selection of firepits and chimineas with a grill that means you can barbecue food as well as enjoy the heat it brings.

June in the garden

The summer sunshine brings bountiful growth so keep on top of your gardening this month and reap the rewards all summer long

Katie Rushworth

You can visit Katie Rushworth’s Show Garden at Tong Garden Centre and pick up how-to guides for simple garden projects you can do at home.

A good feed

Feed all your plants by applying a liquid fertiliser regularly or add a controlled-release fertiliser to soil or compost for a long-lasting feed.

Regular watering is essential

As the warmer weather arrives, plants will need regular watering and the best time is early evening, and twice a day for hanging baskets and containers during very hot spells. Consider installing an irrigation system to ensure consistent watering, the team in store at Tong can advise you.

Give grass a boost

If your lawn looks tired, give it a boost with a liquid feed now and choose a feed, weed and moss killer if you need to tackle weeds and moss.

Beat the bugs

Pests can really take hold in summer so check plants daily and deal with any problems promptly. Slugs and snails are always an issue in our changeable climate but Tong’s experts in store can advise on the right remedy to tackle specific problems.

Deadhead regularly

Remove dead flowers from your bedding plants as they fade, it keeps plants looking tidy and encourages new growth.

Regular weeding will reap rewards

We recommend regularly hoeing to keep on top of weeds – once a week is ideal. Choose a dry, sunny day so the uprooted weeds shrivel on the soil.

Keep an eye out for signs of disease

Disease can really take hold in summer, so check plants daily and deal with any problems promptly.

Plant climbers

Plant fast growing annual climbers such as morning glory and canary creeper to hide eyesores in the garden.

Sow spring bedding

Now’s the time to sow seeds of your favourite spring bedding including wallflowers, sweet Williams and polyanthus.