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June 29, 2010 / Malcolm Dalebö

July jobs on the allotment

  • During this hot and humid month, you turn your back and a dozen new weeds have appeared. 
  • Many grasses and weedy flowers shed their seeds at this time of year so it is even more important to stop them in their tracks or you will end up with more in the long term. 
  • Dig weeds out or, for tougher visitors, carefully paint on a systemic weed killer to prevent damaging the soil or neighbouring plants. 
  • Bindweed can be grown up canes and treated safely away from beds and vegetables. 
  • Keep all salad crops well watered in hot weather. 
  • Be on the lookout for potato blight (see right), as July/August are the months that it thrives in.
  • The amount of seeds for sowing this month to crop this year is starting to drop off, amongst the more popular vegetables are: Broad Beans, Dwarf Beans, Mung Beans, Beetroot, Spring Cabbage, Carrots (for continuation).
  • Sow seed for next years crops: Cauliflowers, Chicory, Coriander (Cilantro), Endive, Kohl Rabi, Lettuce for continuation and winter lettuce, Pak Choi, Peas, Radicchio, Radish, Turnips.
  • Harvest early Bush and Runner Beans, Beetroot, Broccoli, Cabbage, Carrots, Celeriac, Celery, Coriander, Cucumber, Endive, Kale, Lettuce, Spring Onions, Bulb Onions, Peppers, Rhubarb, Rocket, Spinach, Strawberry, Swiss Chard, Tomato. 
  • July is the month that the fruit garden comes into its own, plants laden with ripening fruit and many a tasty berry being harvested. 
  • July may have heavy rain showers – but don’t rely on these to water your fruit garden. 
  • Thinning fruit trees is the best way to obtain larger, and better quality fruit. When thinning remove any damaged or poor quality fruit and then remove the remaining fruit so there is at least 5 cm between each fruit. 
  • Remove any excessive growth on fruit trees. 
  • Espalier and dwarf trees will need training and protection from predators. 
  • In dry weather water fruit trees and apply mulch around the roots.
  • In between the rain showers don’t forget to make time for weekly inspections as things can get out of balance very quickly at this time of year.
  • If you are going on holiday this month, remember to ask someone to keep harvesting your fruit and vegetables, either for themselves or your freezer.
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