The garden jobs you need to remember before going on vacation, according to Monty Don

The horticulture expert reveals how to preserve your garden as the world begins to reopen once again

classic cottage garden plants in best cottage garden plants
(Image credit: Future/Clive Nichols)

August is synonymous with sun-drenched vacations – and as travel (slowly) becomes more readily available, your thoughts may be turning from maintaining your garden to making getaway plans. However, BBC Gardeners’ World presenter Monty Don urges you not to forget about your exteriors completely. Instead, he has shared a list of timely jobs to complete before departure – to ensure you return to a garden that is just as gloriously maintained as it is at every other point of the year. 

While August is the month of travel, it is equally the month where our gardens experience dramatic growth and change; as Monty himself says, ‘August is really a new season and carries the weight of summer and the seeds of winter.’ 

It is, therefore, more important than ever to take care of your garden from afar – but preparation is vital. Monty shares his garden ideas in a new post– that will maintain your exteriors in your absence. 

Summer umbrellas and chairs in a garden

(Image credit: Future)

Where should we begin? ‘Mow the lawn, weed, and make sure plants are well supported,’ Monty begins. 

The garden expert is famed for his grass cutting tips, but he urges you to cut your lawn short this month, especially before traveling. ‘All long grass can be cut and collected and subsequently kept mown short. This transforms meadows as well as being an essential part of encouraging wildflowers,’ Monty explains. If you’re looking for the best lawn mowers to try before you fly, then our guide is a great place to start. 

Part of the plant-supporting process involves protecting flowers from August’s inevitable hot climate, so Monty suggests compensating for the heat before you leave. 

Pristine grass in a large garden

(Image credit: Future / Annaick Guitteny)

‘Pots are most likely to suffer in hot weather, and an irrigation system is ideal, but at [the] very least give them a good soak before you go. Ideally, move smaller pots into the shade and group them together, which will reduce evaporation,’ he says.

In the discussion of his vegetable garden ideas, Monty also suggests asking neighbors or loved ones to help maintain your garden whilst you are away. This is especially recommended if you are a vegetable crop or sweet peas that are ready for picking. 

Large green vegetable garden

(Image credit: Future / Mathia Coco)

Now you can rest easy on vacation, knowing you can return to a garden that looks just as wonderful as it did when you left. Bon voyage.

Megan Slack
Head of Celebrity Style News

Megan is the Head of Celebrity Style News at Homes & Gardens. She first joined Future Plc as a News Writer across their interiors titles, including Livingetc and Real Homes, before becoming H&G's News Editor in April 2022. She now leads the Celebrity/ News team. Before joining Future, Megan worked as a News Explainer at The Telegraph, following her MA in International Journalism at the University of Leeds. During her BA in English Literature and Creative Writing, she gained writing experience in the US while studying in New York. Megan also focused on travel writing during her time living in Paris, where she produced content for a French travel site. She currently lives in London with her antique typewriter and an expansive collection of houseplants.