Well the weather is finally here. With the disappointing stops and starts of such a wet May behind us its now great being able to finally get stuck into our vegetable growing. Squashes and courgettes are already racing ahead and it’s wonderful to see how everything is thriving in the sunshine. Of course that does mean we need to keep the watering can on the go!

This heat is also bad news for some, cooler weather crops may bolt and go to seed, one particular variety of my spinach has, but there’s such an array of things that can be planted now that it hardly seems a bother. Beans or all sorts are going in, cucumbers are going outside and with the risk of frost seemingly behind us it certainly feels like we’ve moved from amber to grow, grow, grow!

Happy growing!

This month we could be planting:

  • Pumpkins and squashes
  • Sweetcorn
  • Tomatoes
  • Lettuces
  • Courgettes
  • Strawberries
  • Cabbages
  • Cucumbers
  • Kales
  • Chards
  • Peas
  • Perennial herbs such as thyme, chamomile, fennel, rosemary, sage, oregano etc Plus more…

Of course not all of these have to be sown from seed. Our website has a wide range of vegetable, fruit and herb plants that can be planted directly into your gardens this month. These are sustainably grown in Shropshire, planted in recycled materials and delivered directly to your door. Plants include growing guides showing you how to grow and harvest them – and if that’s not enough, we run a free veg gardening group offering additional support too! See our website for details. https://homegrownmarketgarden.co.uk/

Checklist of Jobs for June

With planting underway there are several additional jobs to be getting on with this month:

  • Keep the hoe busy to get on top of the weeds. Hoeing on a sunny day makes it easy as the weeds will die in the heat of the sun.
  • Continue to save water where you can. The warmer weather will mean that plants will require more water.
  • Continue to earth up potatoes.
  • Peg down the runners of strawberries and add a layer of straw underneath so that the soft fruit is not in direct contact with the soil.
  • Keep soft fruit covered to prevent them being eaten by the birds.
  • Pinch out side shoots on indeterminate tomatoes.
  • Tomatoes, peppers and cucumber will benefit from regular feeding now. Choose a liquid feed that is high in potassium or harvest comfrey leaves to make into a liquid fertiliser.
  • Check the plant supports for taller plants such as peas and beans. Encourage the plants around to grow around the supports.
  • Continue to thin seedlings to allow room for crops to grow successfully.
  • Keep a close eye on brassica plants for the first sign of caterpillars and aphids. Check the underside of the leaves for the butterfly eggs and deal with them at the first sign.
  • Water tomatoes regularly to prevent blossom end rot but avoid splashing water onto the leaves which could encourage blight spores.
  • Sow catch crops such as radish or gem lettuce between slow-growing brassicas.
  • Add shading to greenhouse to prevent plants scorching.
  • Continue to pick salad crops to encourage more leaves.

And let’s not forget composting, with advice from Garden Organic:

  • Add a mulch on any bare, moist soil, using compost. Organic mulches keep soil moist, and deter weed growth (remove weeds before mulching). Mulches provide a safe habitat for all sorts of beneficial creatures, such as centipedes and beetles that devour slugs and other pests. And the compost provides a constant source of nutrients.
  • Keep adding to your compost bin, making sure to mix ‘greens’ (lawn cuttings etc), with ‘browns’ (cardboard, straw and scrumpled up paper). Turn the heap to aerate it, add water if it feels dry and dusty.

I hope you find this useful. If you’re a keen home gardener or allotmenteer (or would like to be!) why not consider joining our growing community online. It’s free and all are welcome https://www.meetup.com/meetup-group-mqboZExp/

Happy growing!

Theresa, Homegrown Market Garden

Caroline Talbot
Author: Caroline Talbot