Cold winds, short sunny days and long cool nights is what slows everything down at this time of year. Yet we are lucky that many of the northern European crops like this weather. It’s also the main harvest time for citrus fruit.

It’s a month for tidying up the garden. On favourable days I will plant out my seedlings from trays into the soil, beet, kale, cabbages, spinach, asian greens, flowers and herbs. The mushroom compost is providing the hoped-for harvest of mushrooms now and makes a nice dark soil cover to retain some of the sun’s heat and upturned glass jars protect the more cold vulnerable seedlings at planting time.

June is a good time to prune some fruit trees and berries, plant some dormant trees and clean up pots, tools, messy garden corners and order any seeds for next year’s vegetables. Apart from that: Enjoy the midday sun whenever you can, best with a glass of freshly pressed orange juice in hand.

Gardening Guide (following Moon Planting)

☻ New Moon 2 June at 7:04 am

No sowing on 2nd. Best sowing/planting days: all day on 4th and 5th.

Sow direct: spinach and sweet pea and if frost-free, sow lettuce, spring onions, calendula, dianthus, statice and annual lupins.

Sow or plant out: lettuce, spring onions, radicchio, spinach, native everlasting daisy, paper daisy, calendula and dianthus. Plant out pansy and viola, ageratum, aurora daisy, cornflower, cosmos, African and French marigold, nemesia, nigella, petunia, phlox, snapdragon and verbena.

Grow a green manure or cover crop of barley (I use a pack from the supermarket soup section) or triticale. In suitable soils, grow fenugreek, vetch or amaranth. Grow chickpea, red clover, faba bean or field pea.

On damp soil, apply fertiliser tea to: cabbage, celery, leek, lettuce and silver beet, if necessary. Apply at half-strength fortnightly to spinach, until thinned. Apply seaweed tea to: potato bed for July planting. Protect young avocado, fig, mango and pawpaw trees from frost. Now is the time to treat  bindii in lawns.

☽ Waxing Moon 9 June at 12:12 pm

No sowing on 9th. Best sowing/pruning days: from 8:30 am on 10th, all day on 11th, 12th and 13th, to 12:40 pm on 14th.

Sow direct: grain crops, dwarf peas, statice and annual lupins.

Sow or plant out: spring onions, Calendula and dianthus. Plant out pansy and viola.

☺ Full Moon 16 June at 6:15 am

No sowing on 16th. Best sowing/pruning days: all day on 17th and 18th; all day on 21st, 22nd and 23rd. Best harvest days: all day on 19th and 20th.

Sow direct: radish, garlic, swede and turnip.

Plant: mid-season onion, asparagus crowns, rhubarb crowns, kiwifruit, pecan and pistachio, also bare-rooted roses and deciduous trees, shrubs and vines at the end of June. Divide echinacea. In frost-free areas, also plant fig, daylily and herbaceous perennials.

Harvest crops for storage on non-fertile days.

☾ Waning Moon 23 June at 9:49 pm

No sowing between 9:50 am on 23rd and all day on 30th. Best weeding days: all day on 24th and 25th; all day on 29th and 30th.

No sowing or planting this phase, but weed, dig or plough, prepare beds and prune back unwanted growth if required.

Mulch: prepared beds to prevent organic matter drying out. Start a compost heap for pumpkin and melons.