Check young apple fruits especially after the good blossom weather we had in spring. With bees actively out pollinating, trees should now be carrying plenty of small fruits.
Poorly-developed fruits will usually fall during the natural process of early summer, but some trees will still be holding more fruit than they can support.
Thin remaining fruits to leave them regularly spaced about 10 centimetres apart along the stems.
While doing this, inspect each fruit and discard any small, malformed, damaged or diseased ones.
Roses require summer pruning combined with the removal of spent flowers to stimulate another display in autumn.
Foliar feeding can be most helpful in enabling newly-planted vegetable and flower seedlings to establish their roots quickly and promote sturdy growth.
Two- or three-weekly foliar feeds as soon as the leaves have regained turgidity and vigour will make all the difference.
One of the best ways to reduce pest problems in the garden is to grow plants that have natural pest-repelling properties.
Plants as the French marigold can help deter spider mites, whiteflies, white cabbage butterflies and root knot nematodes when planted among vegetables and they also add a splash of colour to the veggie patch.
Figgure it out
Figs that produce new leaves and fruit and allow the figs formed previously to drop is an odd habit of these trees.
Many small fruits are formed in late summer and early autumn and these make it through the winter and start to swell when the buds burst.
However, as their skin has hardened they tend to drop off. This weakens the newer fruits and delays their formation thus risking the second crop.
The answer is to remove all the figs in winter and also thin out those formed in the next and subsequent summer after that so the tree doesn’t become exhausted.
Don’t be tempted to overfeed figs as this promotes lots of leaf growth resulting in the fruit not ripening.
The English yew, Taxus baccata, is a slow-growing conifer that can live for more than 1000 years. One of England’s oldest specimens is the Forthingall yew, in Perthshire, which is believed to be about 2000 years old.
On large properties they are used as hedging plants to form a dense evergreen barrier.
Traditionally used as a symbol of immortality due to their longevity, even though their leaves and bark are poisonous, yews are the source of the life-saving compound Taxol which can be used to treat some forms of cancer.