The Complete Gardener’s Calendar for UK Planting
Are you unsure when to seed, when to sow, and when to pick your flowers and veggies?
In this gardener’s calendar, we run through all the important tasks for every month of the year and the optimal times to plant!
January: Garden Maintenance and Management
January is far from a quiet month for your gardener’s calendar! This is the month when you need to mulch flower beds and borders with manure, compost, or bark – aim for a 5-10 cm layer to protect tender plants from snow and frost.
New plants benefit from watering and slow-release fertiliser (a Blood, Fish & Bone option is ideal). You can keep up to speed with maintaining fences, greenhouses, decking, patios, and conservatories.
February: Sow Veggie Seeds
Vegetables like artichokes and shallots can be planted in February along with shrubs and trees. You can also prune back overgrown hedges and re-firm newly planted trees and shrubs, which tend to lift slightly in colder weather.
February is the right time to cut back overgrown grass to make space for new shoots and deadhead your winter bedding plants.
March: Plant Flowering Bulbs
March is a busy month, and when you need to start sowing perennials, summer-flowering bulbs and replacing compost in your container plants.
You can plant herbs in window trays and get your onions, asparagus and potatoes growing in the vegetable plot or started in the greenhouse.
If the weather is warm, you can sow celery, tomatoes, cucumbers, and courgettes – a windowsill works perfectly well if you don’t have a greenhouse or conservatory.
April: Plant Pot-Growing Fruits
Infamously rainy April can be a little unpredictable, so a lot depends on the weather. Our tip is to plant all your fruits that grow in pots (such as strawberries) and get started on container displays.
Summer baskets can be prepped and kept out of the wind and rain until May, and you can plant bedding plants in seed trays.
May: Lawn Maintenance and Pest Prevention
May is a good time to plant soft fruits and more delicate veggies while repotting any container plants that need to move up a size.
You should pay attention to pests since insects suddenly start becoming more active in May, covering soft fruit bushes with nets, adding straw around strawberry plants, and removing bugs from leaves and containers.
Lawns need extra care in May, as it is the last opportunity to sow new seeds until late autumn, so you should start a weekly mowing routine and give the edges a good trim.
June: Summer Feeds and Watering
In June, you can harvest onions but won’t be doing much planting – it’s a month of maintenance with regular feeds and watering. If you don’t have a slow-release fertiliser, use a liquid feed for tubs and baskets.
July: Bedding Plants and Deadheading
As the summer starts to heat up, your flowers will surge with growth spurts, and leafy veggies, seedlings, new plants, and bedding plants are exposed to drying out – water first thing in the morning or in the evening outside of the hottest parts of the day.
Weed control is important, and if you deadhead your bedding plants after their first flowering, you encourage a second bloom later.
It’s usually best to avoid mowing in dry weather or to cut to a higher profile to prevent brown patches from getting worse.
August: Fertiliser, Manure and Water
August is the first month when you can start to harvest on your gardener’s calendar – you can pick:
Bushes such as rosemary and lavender stop flowering in August, so you can give them a gentle trim without cutting the wood and remove excess foliage from strawberries that have stopped fruiting.
The top priority for August is to water regularly in dry periods and replenish manure or fertiliser that has become dusty.
September: Plant Spring Bulbs
September is quite a peaceful time, but you can get started with planting your spring bulbs and collecting seeds from summer-flowering blooms for next year.
Most fruit and vegetables will be ready to pick – don’t forget the potatoes, as they end up as slug food if left in the ground too long!
October: Harvest Autumn Fruit
Apple and pear trees are ready for harvesting in October, and you should move any tender plants into the greenhouse or conservatory before the first frost.
If you have container plants or potted plants on a patio, you should raise them to ensure they aren’t sitting in water, which can freeze and crack during the winter ahead.
You can stop feeding in October since plants begin to settle down but plant any remaining spring bulbs – apart from tulips, which can wait until November.
November: Tidy the Garden for Winter
November gets busy again, and you can plant evergreen perennials, winter pansies and ornamental grasses in tubs and baskets. You should stake trees over a metre tall and ensure you have frost-proof pots or wrap for container plants.
This month is a good time to dig over your vegetable patch and address maintenance jobs before the coldest months creep in.
December: Harvest Root Veggies
In December, you can harvest root vegetables, such as sprouts, cabbage, parsnips, and leeks, and protect plants and ferns with straw or fleece frost protectors – we’d suggest avoiding plastic or bubble wrap because they can cause plants to sweat on warmer days and begin to rot.
Planning According to Your Gardener’s Calendar
There isn’t a dull month of the year for gardeners, and it’s a great idea to plan ahead according to your calendar to ensure you have all the pots, tools, manure, fertiliser, equipment, and seeds ready to go.
If the weather changes suddenly, or you find your scheduled projects delayed, you can crack on with other maintenance tasks and focus on garden furniture, water features, bird feeders or your indoor plants until the rain passes.
We hope this gardener’s calendar gives you a good idea of the best tasks to concentrate on each month, ensuring you stay on top of essential repair work and plant your seeds at the optimal time for year-round harvests, blooms, and greenery.