June at The Reigate Garden Centre Plant Department
Plant of the Month
Wisteria – famous recently for being the name of the lane that the Desperate Housewives live on, has had an even more glamorous incarnation.
Claude Monet (1840-1926) was the archetypal impressionist. In fact, his ‘Impression, Sunrise’ (1872) gave the Impressionist movement its name. Wisteria was a subject for Claude Monet and the garden at Giverny is home to the Japanese bridge which is covered in Wisteria plants. He wanted the blooming effect to last so he planted a White Wisteria plant to follow when the Purple plant had lost its bloom. Its flowers look like long grapes, dropping voluptuously from the branches in feminine tones of mauve, lavender and white. The soft tones and heady scent set a beautiful, calming and mesmerising scene – a perfect focal point for the garden and the ideal subject for a painting by a Master!
The Wisteria paintings were painted in Monet’s later life after he received a diagnosis of cataracts at the age of 72. His painting during this time became even more indistinct than his earlier work – many thought he was becoming more abstract but it is more likely that he just couldn't see!
Recreate some Glamour
To recreate a little bit of Giverny glamour in your own garden try these plants;
Standard Chinese Wisteria (Wisteria sinensis 'Alba')
vigorous climber, stems twine anti-clockwise. A large plant that can be maintained at any size. Light green pinnate leaves with sweetly scented white flowers.
Wisteria × formosa
Pendent clusters of fragrant, pea-like, violet-blue flowers, each with white and yellow markings appear in May and June on this vigorous wisteria. It is perfect for training over a sunny wall or stout pergola where the flowers can best be appreciated from below. To enhance flowering it requires ample space for the roots to become well established and it will need pruning twice a year.
It should be noted that certain wisteria plants can be harmful when ingested and advice should be taken if you wish to have a non-toxic version in your garden. The Wisteria plant needs to get established before flowering and therefore if you are planting from seed a large degree of patience is required. For those of you that prefer more instant gratification, go for an older, established pot grown plant that can be transferred to your required location. Many species grow quite vigorously and twine attractively around objects in their path. The oldest wisteria plant in the UK, planted in the early 19th century is at the Fuller’s brewery building in Chiswick, London and is still thriving.
If a rose is pot-grown it is very possible to plant it in full bloom. To help it along, place special rose compost in the planting hole.
Plant summer flowers
Summer flowers grow even faster in June than May. If plants are in pots, don’t forget that pot soil only contains six weeks’ worth of nutrients. After that you will need to feed weekly to get the sort of outstanding performance summer flowers are capable of.
Biannuals are magnificent. Think of wallflowers (Cheiranthus), honesty (Lunaria) and other varieties. You can sow them now to flower next year. Dig up bulbs once the foliage has died back completely. Give support to perennials that need it. Careful not to bind the stems together into bunches. Place canes in between in the direction of growth and tie them to those.
You may have planted most of your summer bedding plants, but there is always a space to squeeze a little more. We have a range of larger plants grown in pots to give you that extra impact or fill those left over spaces.
You can continue to plant vegetables in both the greenhouse and also in the garden. We have a comprehensive range of plants and seedlings suitable for all gardeners. Many of these vegetables are suitable for growing in containers & and also “veggie beds”. For further information & advice please ask one of our friendly members of staff.
To guarantee profuse flowering next year, it is best to 'Dead Head' (pinch out the dead flowers). Pull them off with a little bit of stem. The flower buds for next years are directly underneath. Most variants have finished flowering but June. If you pull off the dear flowers now.
This will prevent seeds from forming and the plant will invest even more energy in producing new flowering buds for next year.
June is the month for pruning cherries, but never remove heavy branches because of diseases like silver leaf and gumming.
From 21 June hedge plants go into a second period of rapid growth. They will rapidly recover after pruning and form many young shoots.
Taxus and Buxus
Prune taxus and buxus hedges when it is cloudy.
If you cut delphiniums back after the first flowering, they will flower again in the autumn.
You can still prune the spring-flowering shrubs which have finished flowering now. If you wait too long with this, there is a risk that the new flowering branches for next year will not ripen sufficiently and will not be winter-hardy.
Mowing or Mulch mowing
You can mow the grass and remove the cuttings, compost them or scatter them between the ornamental plants, or you can ‘mulch mow’. A special set of cutters on the mower chops the cuttings up so fine that they can remain on the lawn as mulch and thereby act as a direct fertiliser. Cut a play lawn to three centimetres and an ornamental lawn to two centimetres, but set the mower a bit higher during dry spells.
Tie climbing Roses
You should not prune climbing roses now. Leave them to develop and grow plenty of new shoots. Tie them to prevent the plants from ‘falling over’.
Continue to weed, they grow vigorously in June.
Fertilie the lawn
The lawn has a lot to cope with now, ensure sufficient nutrients, special slow-release lawn food is best.
Scatter other fertiliser every six weeks, preferably do this on a rainy day or spray immediately after scattering do not water every day – if it is possible, once every three to five days is better this will force the grass to root deeper and it will not dry out so quickly.
Roses exhaust the soil in which they are growing quite quickly. So it’s ideal to give them special rose fertiliser which contains trace elements and magnesium.