May is the start of many tasks around the garden to prepare for the coming Winter. With shorter days gardening time is reduced but do remember to keep your Winter garden safe. Treat paths and decks for moss and keep leaves off drives and paths where they may become a hazard, especially when wet. Cut back the branches of overhanging trees and shrubs; these will become lower when wet and may inhibit people walking underneath them. Especially important along public footpaths (plants should be 2m clear above the street boundary to be safe).


Harvest the last of the apple and pears before they get over-ripe.

Remove the diseased leaves of stone fruit trees infected with leaf curl from around the trees – do not compost them.

Clean up strawberries and dead leaves and replant new plants from any healthy runners.

Sow green crops on unused ground.

Look out for caterpillars on the brassicas and treat as needed.

Sow the first broad beans.

Keep on top of the weeds as they are harder to control during cooler wetter conditions.


Clean up flower beds, remove Summer annuals, cut back perennials as they finish flowering and keep weed free.

Plant Spring bulbs as soon as possible.

Plant Spring annuals like pansies, stocks, polyanthus etc.

Mulch shrub boarders with pea straw or like to keep weeds down.

Prepare ground for any new plantings digging over and get rid of any perennial weeds.


Do any repairs and top dressing.

Mow weekly until growth stops.

Treat for weeds.

Apply fertilisers.

Treat for moss.