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  1. Gardening reminders for the month of August

    Gardening reminders for the month of August

    Here’s our gardening reminders for the month of August:

    1) Now is the last chance to prune stone fruits such as cherries and plums. Choose a dry day in order to prevent disease entry through the wound. If you have peaches or apricots under protection, prune them now to prevent silver leaf disease.

    2) Cut back the long whippy growth of Wisteria to within 3 buds of the old wood if they are not required to extend the area covered by the plant.

    3) Keep watering those containers! Placing the plant in a saucer-shaped dish will be a great help in making the water you apply remain available to the plant.

    4) With the weather so dry it is an ideal time to concentrate on the removal of perennial weeds, either by hand or with the aid of the chemical Glyphosate.

    5) Check that weeds are not spreading under larger shrubs where the shade has kept them that little bit more moist and able to seed.

    6) Towards the end of the month cut back the canes of fruited cane fruits to ground level, and tie in the young shoots which will provide next year’s harvest.

    7) Keep dead-heading the best flowering plants to encourage new flowers and stop them setting seed. Apply a liquid feed as plants will require added nutrition to counter the dry weather and heavy watering.

    8) Keep hardy and half-hardy annuals well-watered and weed-free. Try not to walk on the beds as the plants damage easily.It is usual to place a plank across two boxes to help with weeding and the removal of spent flowers.

    9) Trim fast growing hedges, and don’t forget the weeds in the hedge bottoms!

    10) Remove rose blooms as they fade and don’t apply feed after the end of July, as late soft growth would not be hardy before winter.

    11) Complete the lifting of last seasons’ bulbs and dry them off naturally in light woven sacks for maximum ventilation.

    12) Take cuttings of shrubs, heathers, hydrangeas and fuchsias.

    13) Keep an eye on the whole garden and spray as necessary against pests on dahlias and Chrysanthemums in particular.

    14) When going on holiday and concerned about indoor containers being watered, try placing a full bucket of water on the garage floor and placing your pots around it on their own saucers.
    Using a piece of wet string about the thickness of a bootlace, tie one end to a piece of old cutlery and place in the bucket. Push the other end into the compost of a pot. Place strings from bucket to all pots.

    Posted 1st Aug 9:21am
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  2. Six great plants to keep the weeds at bay

    Six great plants to keep the weeds at bay

    Are weeds taking over your garden? If you choose ground cover plants they will naturally smother weeds, they cover the ground and don’t leave any spaces where weeds can grow.

    Here are six great plants to keep the weeds at bay.

    1) Alchemilla Mollis is a great ground cover plant that is best in full sun or partial shade and flowers in June – September. Its round broad leaves are perfect for edging a path and smothering any weeds.

    2) Ajuga is a great ground cover for a shady area that will form a quick carpet of foliage flowering in early summer. They are great for filling in gaps, edging paths or even used to spill over the edge of a pot.

    3) Pachysandra terminalis are known for their dark glossy green leaves that form dense mats of groundcover in full sun or full shade. A perfect addition between shrubs and trees.

    4) Vinca Major is perfect for supressing weeds under trees, and even on sloping banks, as they are happiest in full sun to partial shade, flowering from April – September. If you have a small garden try Vinca minor instead.

    5) Geranium Johnsons blue has a beautiful saucer-shaped purple flower that appears from May through to August. They are perfect for the front of a border and will create a dense carpet that will supress weeds, they are happy in full sun – partial shade.

    6) Hostas love shade and look fantastic at a path edge. Alternatively, plant them at the front of a border in contrast with ferns, once they’re established the foliage will supress weeds.

    Posted 23rd Aug 9:18am
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  3. Tips for your allotment

    Tips for your allotment

    Check out our allotment tips for national allotment week.

    •Crop rotation – this is a great practice to follow which helps with soil fertility, weed control and pest and disease control. Split your plot into sections depending on how much of one group you want to grow then each year rotate by one plot. This is normally done over 3 or 4 years
    3 Year
    • Year one
    Section one: Potatoes
    Section two: Legumes, onions and roots
    Section three: Brassicas
    • Year two
    Section one: Legumes, onions and roots
    Section two: Brassicas
    Section three: Potatoes
    • Year three
    Section one: Brassicas
    Section two: Potatoes
    Section three: Legumes, onions and roots
    4 Year
    • Year one
    Section one: Legumes
    Section two: Brassicas
    Section three: Potatoes
    Section four: Onions and roots
    • Year two
    Section one: Brassicas
    Section two: Potatoes
    Section three: Onions and roots
    Section four: Legumes
    • Year three
    Section one: Potatoes
    Section two: Onions and roots
    Section three: Legumes
    Section four: Brassicas
    • Year four
    Section one: Onions and roots
    Section two: Legumes
    Section three: Brassicas
    Section four: Potatoes

    • Clear weeds from the site 1st. Do not use a rotavator as this can spread the roots of weeds such as Nettles and Bindweed which will then re grow. Instead cut down to a manageable height and use a fork or spade to dig out. This may seem labour intensive but worth it for great soil.

    • Consider what you want to grow as some crops can be in the ground years or take up large amounts of room. Soft fruit bushes will require cages with netting to protect from birds.

    • Weeding between rows with a hoe in dry weather will help keep weeds under control.

    • Watering – plants need to be encouraged to search for water deeply, so water well once a week instead of a light sprinkling every day. If you have a shed on your plot, invest in a water butt. This helps create a convenient supply of water.

    • Sun – Ideally a plot should be in sun which is ideal for most crops. If you have a more shaded location, then hose crops wisely. Currents and berries along with chards, kale and lettuces will grow well if planted out with an established root system.

    • Soil – some crops won’t grow in particular soil so get dirty and test your soil. It is also worth doing a pH test as you may need to add soil improvers. Ideally you are looking for a pH level between 6.1 and 7 as most plants will grow in this as it is high in nutrient. It is always worth adding good rich organic matter each year.

    • Pest and Diseases – the most common issue is with slugs and snails. They can devastate a crop over night so try and use organic control such as Wool pellets or go on a hunt overnight and pick them off. Watch out for diseases such as Allium Leaf Minor, Potato and Tomato Blight and Club Root.

    • Make you own compost – from 1 simple compost bin to 3 large crates, there is a way to make your own compost for every size plot. Starting in the spring mix green, nitrogen-rich material with brown, carbon-rich material. Keep adding to the pile, breaking up larger items and if it becomes dry spray with water. Turn regularly with a fork as it starts to cool down. This method should see compost ready in 4 months.

    • Mulching – one of the best for nutrients and cost effective is leaf mulch. Simply take a black bin liner and put a few holes in the side and bottom. Collect your leaves and put them in the bag along with a spray of water. Tie the back and place it in a shaded area until the following autumn when you can apply to the plot. Try to exclude conifer and evergreen as these take several years to decompose. If you have a larger area and a lot of leaves to collect, make a leaf bin out of stakes and chicken netting.

    • Wildlife friendly plots – help to encourage bees, butterflies, hedgehogs and frogs especially in more urban areas. Avoid using harsh chemicals buy using companion planting or manually removing pests. Think about creating a wild flower section which may also include a small pond. Set up bee-boxes, hedgehogs-homes and log piles.

    Posted 14th Aug 3:47pm
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  4. Johnsons of Whixley supply garden display for global coffee brand

    Johnsons of Whixley supply garden display for global coffee brand

    Johnsons of Whixley supply garden display for global coffee brand

    We have worked with a promotional equipment specialist to deliver a UK pop-up brand promotion for a world-renowned coffee brand.

    We supplied over £7,000 worth of plants and materials including ginkgo and bay trees, grasses, bamboo, shrubs, ferns, Ivy screens and ivy on canes, to a pop-up garden in Manchester to promote the coffee brand, which operates cafes and sells its products in shops worldwide.

    The project is being delivered in conjunction with DHB Group that provides a full range of bespoke, quality and mobile promotional equipment solutions to blue chip clients in the UK and throughout Europe.

    The garden features hanging chairs and a decorative birdcage alongside the greenery to create “an oasis to pause and rest “and is open to the public for 12 days on Wednesday 8th August at St. Ann’s Square, Manchester.

    The display will also feature an insight into the history of coffee, from its legendary origins in 9th century Ethiopia, plus information on how people can support the brand’s charitable initiatives.
    Johnsons of Whixley’s Ellie Richardson said: “For close to 100 years, Johnsons has established working relationships with companies large and small across many sectors in the UK and beyond, and we value each of them. However, it’s rare to be given an opportunity to work on a horticultural project for a true world-renowned brand.

    “It was also great to get properly ‘hands on’ with the project – from quoting, to helping plant, to seeing the final finished garden in Manchester. It’s rare we have the opportunity to be involved in a project so comprehensively, from start to finish, but it’s a challenge the business has relished.”

    Posted 8th Aug 10:58am
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  5. Congratulations to Luke Richardson new cash & carry manager

    Congratulations to Luke Richardson new cash & carry manager

    Congratulations to Luke Richardson who has now taken on the role of cash & carry manager.

    1.How many years have you worked at Johnson’s? 12 Years in varying different positions. My last role was in Amenity Sales managing southern accounts which was a successful period and I achieved a goal of becoming the company’s biggest sales rep last year.

    2.What do you like about working in your family’s business? It has it’s challenges but it’s all I know! Sometimes the boundaries between work and home are blurred but in the main it’s only positives. There’s more of a togetherness and as a family we have real pride in our business for what John’s achieved but also gratitude for the sacrifices made to get here.

    3.What makes your new role different from your last? In the Cash & Carry I’m responsible for a department and people. Whereas my last role was fulfilling the requirements of large commercial accounts in the amenity landscape sector.

    4.What do you think the challenges will be? On a personal level not to be as self-centric which you could say is a sales trait. And for the C&C the age old problem of the weather – I sit here following a tough 6 weeks of heatwave wondering how on earth to plan a budget a year in advance… We are very much at the behest of the elements!!!

    5.What are you looking forward to in your new role? There’s a lot more variety to the role and it’s essentially a microcosm of the nursery.

    6.What changes do you hope to make during your management of the cash & carry? Nothing drastic as the C&C guys are doing such a good job – it’s about consolidation more than anything!
    Operationally there will be a few small changes and I’ll look to revamp the quote process. We have recently implemented a new till system which should improve functionality.

    7. Do you think your previous role will help in your new role? My time in amenity has given me an excellent foundation and I feel it will particularly help with sales elements, operations and general organisation. In the past few years I have worked with some great people and to draw experience from someone as knowledgeable as Tony has been invaluable

    Posted 8th Aug 3:49pm
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  6. Plant donation for Love Your Home and Garden

    Plant donation for Love Your Home and Garden

    Plant donation for Love Your Home and Garden

    Earlier on in the year we teamed up with the Love Your Home and Garden team to supply a number of plants to the value of over £600.

    The supply was for a single mum and her severely disabled son in Mansfield. Josh is 16 and the equipment he needs to support him and enable his mum, Benita, to move him around was getting so big that he was confined to one room in the house.

    The project included not only an indoor renovation to help add some much needed open space, but a complete outdoor makeover too.

    The plant donation included Helleborus, Heucheras, vincas, ceanothus trellis and a number of other shrubs and herbaceous varieties.

    We donated 55 different plant lines and made the 72-mile trip to deliver the plants. We hope Benita and Josh get to enjoy their newly renovated home and garden for many years to come.

    Ellie Richardson, marketing co-ordinator for Johnsons of Whixley, said: “It’s great to donate a number of plants to the Love Your Home and Garden team, our plants are very visual so to make such an impact for a great cause is wonderful”

    Missed the episode? you can click on the link here to find out more information Love Your Home and Garden Episode 1

    Need a plant donation? we love giving something back to the community and getting our hands dirty, supporting local, regional and national charities and projects.

    Over the years we have provided plants and trees to improve outdoor spaces at numerous organizations across the country.

    If you, or a charity or initiative you know, would benefit from a donation or support,feel free to get in touch using the contact form on our Contact Us page

    Posted 11th Aug 4:00pm
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