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Beat The Heat – Keep Your Plants Healthy And Happy

09th July 2018

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The summer has well and truly arrived, and everyone is outside making the most of those rays of sunshine. The long hours of daylight give a nice boost to many crops, but can also have a negative affect if they are not cared for appropriately. Read through this guide for some top tips to keep your veg plants healthy and happy this summer.

Wonderful Water
It may seem like the most obvious piece of advice to give, but it is also highly important, so it is worth taking note. We have all been guilty of under watering, and now even if you forget your daily regime on the veg patch for just one day your plants’ health can take a turn for the worst.

As well as remembering to water it is important that you use the right technique. Water either in the morning or evening, as this will mean less of the liquid is evaporated by the strong summer sunshine during the day. Water from the base of the plant, not from above which will drench the leaves, as this allows the plant to have easier access to this resource.

Be economic with your watering, and have waterbutts on the plot to save rainwater, this is especially needed for plants like acid-loving blueberries which prefer this to tap water as it affects the pH of the soil they are growing in.

Greenhouse Concerns
If it is hot outside on the plot then it will be even hotter in the greenhouse! The plants growing in this under cover structure will need plenty of water, they are also vulnerable to being scorched. To help the crops, you can put up shades on the greenhouse that will reduce the strength of the sunlight coming through, although be careful not to use ones that are too thick, or leave them up for too long, as the plants could become negatively affected. It is also really important to make sure that the greenhouse is getting enough air circulation – open windows and doors to help get the air flowing!

Mulching
Mulching around plants that are growing is a great way to keep the moisture in the soil, so they stay healthy during warmer weather. Examples of materials that can be used includes compost, lead mould, manure and wood chippings. This practise also helps reduce those pesky weeds from prospering around your crops, as they would take any available water resources, too, so there are many advantages to a bit of mulching. Do, however, remember not to put mulch against plant stems, as this can cause them to go soft and rot. It is best to plan ahead when it comes to this activity, as the ideal time is in late spring and autumn, so put this in to the gardening plan for next year.

Weeding Needs
Those fast-developing, unwanted plants that try to take hold on your plot, will not only take away much of the space where you planned on growing crops, but also the water resources, too. Remove those by hand that are dominating around your crops, or use a hoe to run between rows on the veg patch. The strong sunshine will help dry out the roots of the weeds as well once uprooted.

By caring for your crops and looking after them, they can enjoy this heat like we can, while staying happy and healthy!

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