smiles in the sun, and it is May...

smiles in the sun, and it is May...

A busy month, with three bank holidays this year so occasion to spruce up our gardens.

Lots to plant out and sow this time of year as the soil warms and night frosts fade away. Harden off your tender plantlets such as beans or sweet peas before setting them out where you want them to grow.

Outdoors, depending on your location and soil type, sow carrots and parsnips, climbing and dwarf French beans. Start successional sowings of beetroots, carrots, lettuce, peas, spinach, broad beans and radishes. Once these are established, sow another row or patch or container full and so on each month so as you pull your tasty crops then the next plants are already growing and maturing.

Outdoors sow French marigolds, nasturtiums and zinnias for flowers this summer. For flowers next spring sow biennials such as wallflowers, foxgloves, evening primrose and verbascum.

Sow cucurbits such as courgettes, squash, cucumbers singly, one seed in a 7cm pot and keep in a light frost-free place. Once you’re confident the last frost has passed, start hardening off ready to plant outside in June. Begin with cucumbers and melons, then courgettes, marrows, squash and pumpkins.

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