‘Important’ gardening tasks to avoid during a heatwave – ‘preparation is key’

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With the heatwave now here, Britons will need to ensure their gardens are well-cared-for to cope with the hot weather. Expert in hard landscaping, Marshalls, have shared their tops five garden dos and don’ts to maintain a healthy garden during this week’s heatwave.

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Don’t

Don’t mow the lawn

During the hot weather, the lawn will be trying to get access to water and so should not be mowed.

Mow the lawn before the heatwave and leave grass cuttings on the top to shelter the soil.

Don’t overwater grass

Overwatering grass can actually eventually lead to its demise.

Water the grass during the cooler time periods and just once a week.

Water deeply to ensure there’s enough water in case of a drought.

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Don’t prune plants

Pruning plants will signal them to grow which uses vital energy and water.

Energy and water needs to be preserved in the heat so don’t prune until after the heatwave.

Don’t plant new greenery

Digging up soil in hot weather can cause it to lose water and increase its temperature.

Plant things during cooler weather and use companion plants to create shade.

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Don’t use a hosepipe

A hosepipe ban could be introduced if the heatwave lasts.

Preserve water as much as you can and use a watering can, ideally with recycled rainwater.

Do

Do understand the makeup of the garden

Gardeners need to understand everything about their garden – from their soil to its position – so they can prepare for the sun.

Knowing the makeup of the garden allows gardeners to position their furniture in either the shade or sun and add mulch to certain plant areas.

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Do water plants in the morning or evening

It may be tempting to water plants multiple times a day but this can actually overwater plants.

Plants should be watered once a day in the morning or evening when it’s cooler.

Watering in cooler weather, lessens the chances of the water evaporating straight away.

Another tip for watering plants in a heatwave is to ensure shallow watering.

Watering plants at the soil’s surface encourages them to find water near the surface which can help them survive periods of drought.

Do water and add shade to vegetable patches

In the extreme heat, water vegetable patches in the morning and evening.

Keep vegetables patches sheltered by creating a small canopy.

Anna Hampshire, head of marketing at Marshalls said: “People take pride in their gardens and spend a lot of time and money on their maintenance, therefore it is important that we are all equipped to take care of them during a heatwave.

“Preparation is key and whilst it may be too late for this heatwave, some forward-planning with your garden design can help you fare better in future hot summers.

“Consider where the garden gets the sun at different times of the day and locate your features accordingly.

“Create a play spot for the children in an area that’s shady after 3pm for after school fun, keep flower beds and veg patches cool by adding mulch, and place your BBQ in a sunny spot so you can grill as the sun sets and still stay warm.

“It is also important for people to remember the hard landscaped areas such as patios and driveways.

“We would suggest cooling these areas for children or pets by simply using water, especially if your driveway or patio is dark in colour.”

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