Garden maintenance tasks in May

With gardens up and down the UK in full bloom, May is a great time for any enthusiastic gardener! No matter where you live in the country, May usually means the chance of the last frost has passed. The lighter and longer days (and hopefully warmer temperatures!) all lend themselves perfectly to getting out in the garden and getting your hands dirty. But what garden maintenance tasks can you be getting on with in May? Let’s take a look.  

Care for your lawn

During May, your lawn will require lots of your time to ensure it’s in the best condition possible. Regular mowing is needed to control the rapid growth your lawn will be going through at this time of year. 

Weekly mowing is recommended as an ideal, and you should always ensure you cut the grass to the correct height. For most lawns, somewhere around 10mm-25mm is a good benchmark. 

May is a good time of year to apply a nitrogen-based fertiliser to encourage a healthier lawn. If your grass suffers from moss or weeds, treat it with a good quality lawn weedkiller; that should take care of the problem efficiently without harming your grass. 

Look after greenhouse plants 

As temperatures begin to rise, you’ll need to be careful with your greenhouse to ensure it doesn’t become too hot. 

The hot, dry conditions caused by direct sunlight coming through greenhouse glass in spring and summer can scorch plant leaves, encourage pests such as red spider mites and lead to the patchy ripening of greenhouse crops such as tomatoes and peppers.

To avoid overheating, open the windows or vents to allow air to flow through your greenhouse. You can also paint the windows using shade paint, too. 

To further help reduce pests and increase the humidity of your greenhouse, you can wet the floor on especially hot days. 

Keep on top of weeds 

During this month, it’s not just your plants that will be in full bloom. Unfortunately, the weeds will also be thriving. 

There are many things you can do to keep them under control, and you don’t always need to use chemicals. It’s up to you to find out which methods work best for your garden. 

Hoeing over your beds will help to kill the seeds and also bring them to the surface so they can dry out, rather than re-rooting. 

To prevent weeds in the first place, you can consider some kind of weed inhibitors such as bark chips or root barriers. 

It’s important to keep on top of this particular task, no matter how laborious it is! We recently wrote a blog outlining the best ways to tackle weeds, you can read it here. 

Trim your hedges 

Most hedges only need trimming once a year and May is a good time to undertake this crucial garden maintenance task. 

Before cutting hedges back, always check for signs of wildlife living there, especially bird nests. 

In the UK, nesting season runs between March and August, and under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, it is an offence to disturb or destroy a bird nest. If you notice any nesting activity in your hedges, consider postponing the maintenance trimming for after the season passes.

For large hedges, you’ll find that life is much easier with a petrol or an electric trimmer. Smaller hedges can be easily maintained with handheld shears, as long as they are sharp enough. 

Ensure you water your hanging baskets 

Hanging baskets can easily make any garden look lush and full of colour, but it is important to remember to properly look after them to ensure they look healthy and beautiful all summer long. 

They will need to be watered regularly and thoroughly. Because they are suspended in the air, they are subjected to every breeze and gust of wind that makes its way through your garden. Because of this, the soil can quickly dry out. 

If any of the plants begin to die off or have finished blooming, make sure to replace them with something else, to ensure your basket always looks its best. 

Paint your fence panels 

Here in the UK, we are lucky enough to typically have two bank holidays during the month of May, and this spare time can be put to good use in the garden!

Although bank holidays are well known for their aptly-timed bad weather, if we are lucky enough for some sunshine, it can be a great time to freshen up or change the colour of your fence panels. 

Staining your fence panels will not only improve the overall look of your garden but, by staining them, you will also help to protect them from the elements and prolong their lifespan. This is a job best done before planting any annual climbers such as sweet peas or clematis– you don’t want to be painting around each individual flower! 

Get the garden maintenance professionals in 

We understand that sometimes life can get in the way and you just don’t have the time to dedicate to your garden. Here at Rosewood, we have a friendly and professional team that can make short work of the tasks we’ve listed above! Whether you need a one-off garden clearance, lawn care or regular garden maintenance, please do get in touch with us to see how we can help by calling 07393 821797 or emailing [email protected] You can also follow us on Facebook or Instagram to see what our team have been getting up to!