We know it’s not a lovely subject to talk about, but many pests and diseases can become a problem in the height of summer.

Pests breed very quickly and can soon get out of control and become a major headache. Walk your garden a couple of times a week and check your plants for any pests and diseases (preferably with a cold, refreshing drink in hand!). This will ensure you spot any issues before they become a problem.

Most garden pests and diseases tend to congregate on the underside of leaves, at growing tips or on flowers. Ready-to-use insecticides and fungicides do away with fiddly mixing and ensure you have something immediately to hand, ready to deal with any issues as soon as you see them.

You’ll get better results from your pesticides if you spray in the evening. If you spray during sunny days, much of the chemical will evaporate before it has had a chance to work properly.

Having ‘green fingers’ and looking after your plants – watering them when they need it and keeping them growing strong by feeding with a fertiliser – will help them fight off vegetable garden pests and diseases.

Aphids on leaf

Pests and diseases to be particularly aware of in July/August

Aphids – greenfly and blackfly – breed very quickly at this time of year. They attack a wide range of plants and congregate together in large groups. One aphid can soon become millions, so stop them before they multiply uncontrollably.

Slugs and snails can still be a major problem in summer.  Make sure you protect susceptible plants – especially hostas, delphiniums and vegetables. Lightly sprinkle slug pellets, place slug barriers around plants or water on a liquid slug killer.

Vine weevil grubs eat the roots of plants and do untold damage – they can even kill plants. This is one of the best times of year to treat container plants with a liquid vine weevil killer to control this devastating pest.

Lily beetles may look attractive, but they eat the leaves, stems and flower buds of lilies, often reducing them to flowerless sticks. Spraying the foliage with a systemic insecticide will help prevent damage.

Powdery mildew, which is a white or grey covering to the leaves, is always worse in hot, dry weather. It attacks a wide range of plants, including roses, clematis and asters. Make sure you keep susceptible plants well watered to prevent the soil drying out.

Always water the soil, not the foliage, as the disease spreads far more easily on wet foliage. And spray plants with a systemic fungicide before the problem starts to protect your plants and stop it becoming a problem.

We’ve got all you need to protect your garden and keep your plants healthy in store and online at wilko.com

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