This week we’re celebrating National Gardening Week. Of course we think there are plenty of good reasons to get out in the garden, but in case you need a little bit of inspiration, we’ve put together some tips on what to do to ready your garden for some brilliant colour this summer.

To start the season off in the right way, here’s a list of jobs you need to be getting on with now to ensure that your garden is ready for the season ahead.

Ready, set, go…!

Harden off
If you have raised your plants in a glasshouse Preparing your plants for life outside is a good idea so put half-hardy plants outside during the day for around 7-10 days before they go outdoors for good.
Plants like dahlias and canna which are tender plants, need to be hardened off as soon as the risk of frost has passed.

Pest watch
Keep an eye out for the bright red scarlet lily beetle. If left to their own devices they will devour the leaves of your lilies. And keep an eye out for slugs- lupins and delphiniums are particularly susceptible.

Take soft wood cuttings
Take plant material from the new soft growth. This type of cutting roots the easiest. Cuttings taken in spring can be potted up by mid-summer and will develop a strong root system to get them through the winter. Make sure you gather your material first thing in the morning whilst the sap is rising and before the day gets too warm. Slice under a leaf node and put in compost.

Plant up
Get your pots and hanging baskets planted up, so that come summer your garden will be ablaze with beautiful technicolour.

Keep up the weeding
Is there ever a time when we don’t need to weed? Sadly, probably not! Keep your garden looking lovely by attending to the basics. Clear up, and weed out for the best garden this summer. This is a crucial time before the weed sets seeds and you have a bigger problem to manage.

Find out more about National Gardening Week here.