Spear & Jackson 'How to' weeding and weeding tools

By

Lee Bestall
Cultivating Tools
6th June 2011

After a week of very mixed weather, the past few days have been lovely.  So warm and sunny, which means the weeds are growing at a pace.  Weeding out seedlings and small plants is so much easier than waiting until they get larger, and whatever you do, don’t let them flower and set seed.  If you do this they’ll be back next year and the year after at least!

The garden is looking good, and there are plenty of things in flower.  Some have flowered early this year, but if you want to extend their season, I have a few tricks up my sleeve.

Regular feeding and watering is the first thing, this will keep plants healthy.  Then, deadhead spent faded flowers to encourage more new ones.  The theory is that if you don’t let the plant set seed it will send out more new flowers (it’s a survival tactic).  The other thing you can try is known as the ‘Chelsea Chop’.  This is when you reduce the height of herbaceous perennials by around 50% (yes, by just removing the top half with a pair of sheers in one swift chop!).  This will encourage new buds and therefore flowers later in the season.  But make sure you do it before mid-June.

Finally, by chopping early flowering herbaceous perennials (such as Delphiniums) which have already flowered, right down to 15cm high.  This way they will re-generate and flower in autumn.  Make sure they have plenty of water and food though! 

Tool of the week

 

Long handled Weedfork

5110WF 12" Handle Weedfork

For more info on this shovel follow this link 5110WF

LONG HANDLED WEEDFORK

Long handled Weedfork

I’d never used a long handled hand fork before, and thought them a little odd.  But it wasn’t until I actually tried this tool that I discovered how much I like it.  It’s easier to reach further into the border, and as it has a long handle, you can get a better leverage, making forking over the area easier.  I was able to get in-between other plants easily and weed out the nettles which seem to have arrived with the horse manure!

So, whether you’re weeding, watering or out walking this week, have a good one.

Lee 'The Gardener'

Share this

The Author

Lee Bestall

Lee Bestall

As a horticulturalist and garden designer, I'll be guiding you through the seasons ahead, sharing tips, successes and failures and exploring some of the new and inventive products on the market.

Join me to see what jobs I recommend you should be doing in the garden each month.