Have you ever dreamt of being able to achieve the perfect lawn, beautifully trimmed hedges and immaculate flowerbeds? Many of us wish we could do more with our gardens but don’t quite know where to start. Fret not, the gardening experts at Hayter are here to help with some handy advice to help you achieve the perfect garden this summer. Hedges and trees A great way to get your garden to look its best is to care for your hedges and trees. It doesn’t take a professional to get started, just a few key points to keep in mind. Conifers are generally easy to maintain and look good all year around. Summer is the perfect time to give them a prune as this is when they are at their strongest and healthiest. Best way to maintain hedges and trees is to use a cordless hedge trimmer as it generally provides better access to all those hard to reach branches. Avoid pruning on days with high heat and strong sun, as the exposed foliage can be scorched and damaged. You should also avoid pruning deciduous trees and bushes in summer as these use a lot of energy to develop their leaves in spring. Cutting them off in summer will mean the plant won’t be able to re-purpose the nutrients come autumn, so hold off until the colder months to help your leafy trees and bushes conserve their energy to grow healthier and stronger. Walkways and decking Another thing to consider is to give walkways, and patios a clean. A jet-clean can quickly remove

unwanted build-up and dirt and will quickly make a big impact to the overall look of your garden. This also goes for tiled or graveled walkways, if you keep the weeds at bay your garden will instantly look much neater. The saying goes “pull when wet, hoe when dry” and this is a piece of advice to keep in mind when weeding to avoid spreading. Arm yourself with gloves, a shovel, a garden hoe and a rake and you should be able to tackle most stubborn weeds. Always be careful and try to remove the entire root, as this will reduce the likelihood of the weed returning. Lawncare Even though lawncare should be considered all year around, to many mowing is synonymous with summer. To achieve the perfect lush lawn, consider feeding it every 6-8 weeks with a suitable lawn feed. This will

add nutrients to the soil and help crowd out any weeds. As lawn feed differs per brand, ensure you carefully read the label before use. Another tip to keep in mind is to allow your lawn to grow a little longer than usual as this will help it cope better with spells of drought. When cutting your lawn, try not to cut more than one third off the top of the grass blade as this ensures that the grass doesn’t go into shock and grow back faster in an attempt to make up for loss surface area to catch the sun’s rays. If necessary, give your grass a drink, particularly when the showers are few and far between. Always water your lawn at times when the moisture is more likely to be soaked in rather than evaporate, preferably in the early morning or late evening. Flowers and plants Flowers and plants bring life and personality to our outdoor living spaces and summer is one of the most rewarding times to show our flowerbeds some love. There is an abundance of plants that thrive in the heat and sun, lavender, dahlias, poppies, marigolds and sunflowers are just a few, so spend some time in your local gardening centre to find some plants you love. Another great tip to maximise your outdoor space, consider companion planting your plants. Flowers and vegetables often flourish together and can help yield whilst saving space. For more information and great gardening advice please visit

Break’n Records at Brecon County Show

“With an excellent attendance at last year’s Brecon County Show, we’ll be looking to do so again in 2019,” says Gwyn Davies, who has been involved for many years and is currently in his second year as its chair- man. He should know, he oversees everything at the show - from cobs to catering, poultry to parking and sheep to shopping. The event’s been going since 1755, so they must be doing something right! “I put this down to a successful formula,” he explains. “We’re the oldest agricultural show in the land and we take the mission of the Agricultur- al Society very seriously indeed. We have a healthy entry for our main classes. But alongside that expert and specialist livestock and produce competition community, the Brecon Show appeals to the general public for many miles around. We like to think of ourselves as The People’s Show.” Gwyn continues, “The spectacle of the best of Welsh: from the magnificent gentle giants – the beautifully presented and trained shire-horses, to the spritely cob foals; the awesome might of the great breeding-bulls and the proud stance of beautifully prepared sheep – they really do draw the crowds.”

“The competitors are devoted to it – and, I firmly believe the public see this and admire it – as much as they admire the stock themselves.” Gwyn adds, “It’s quintessentially Welsh. We get quite emotional about it - just as we do seeing a fine military band or singing Hen Wlad Fy Nhadau.” A great day-out and great value for money “Our main-attractions really do draw the crowds,” The chairman says. “Last year we watched in awe as the death-defying Broke FMX Moto- cross Display Team wheelied, jumped and somersaulted. And this year we look forward to the thrills that “The Cavalry of Heroes” will bring to Brecon. But more and more visitors come to enter their dogs especially in the fun agility competitions – or the equally fun command-and-obey competition for children and their pet dogs. Always popular are the com- petition classes for Poultry, Pygmy and Dairy Goats. You’d be amazed how cut-throat the competition can be for the best egg-yolk displayed on a saucer in the Domestic Marquee!” “But nowadays there’s even more to it,” Gwyn explains. “It’s a show for the whole community. Regional clubs, groups and societies exhibit to display their activities, from apiaries to yachting. People come to shop and enjoy local food. Dare I tell the Agricultural Society – there may even be a few visitors who don’t come to see the livestock!” This is what makes the Brecon-show a great success-story. Find out more about Brecon County Show on www.breconcountyshow. com

12 - Friday 5th July 2019 - Cardiff & South Wales Advertiser

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