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Tips for protecting your garden
Tips for protecting your garden

Windy conditions and warmer days mean the soil is drying and your garden will start changing in its needs and water demands.

Here are the essential things you should focus on to keep the good start to the growing season on track.

1. With some strong winds recently you are probably aware of trees and shrubs that are a bit gangly and misshapen. This is a good time to trim to shape. Reducing the length of long branches reduces the risk of them breaking and damaging the garden and your plants.

2. Start looking for dry patches in the garden. Any exposed sands will become water-repellent very quickly once baked in the sun, and applying a wetting agent after a thick layer of mulch is important.

3. One thing you can do to tackle dry patches is to change the way water moves through your soil. The application of clay now is going to convert sand into a loam-like structure and once amended it changes the soil forever. The top 20-30cm is the critical zone for plant-feeding roots and this is the area where you want to slow water movement, allowing plants' roots more time to absorb the moisture and not see it run below their catchment area and end up wasted. In a recent trial at home I've discovered not all clays are the same and I am now strongly focused on kaolin clays in sandy soils. Bentonite clay particles rise to the surface and don't bind soil together. They are highly absorbent, but the moisture is being lost to evaporation from my experience to date.