Spring sowing of annuals between the perennials will now take place, and in the case of autumn-sown batches vigorous thinning must be practised. Vacant patches can in due course be filled with groups of stocks, French marigolds, ageratum, or other half-hardy plants.
As the season advances there will be plenty of routine work on the flower-border. The use of the Dutch hoe should be assiduous, especially during dry spells. Without aeration no plant can flourish, and judicious hoeing accomplishes this, as well as setting free the moisture from beneath the hard-baked crust, and generally promoting a cool and beneficial condition of surface mulch.
Before watering, or when rain seems likely, the hoe should always be applied, and it will, of course, fulfil the function of eradicating weeds at the same time, these growing apace as summer draws on.
Constant work will be needed to keep the flower border neat and trim, especially in the staking of plants as these grow taller, and also in removing dead leaves and cutting down plants when they "go over." Staking requires especially skilful management, the object being in every case to secure proper support while effectually hiding the stake; when a single stake only is necessary, this is usually placed towards the back of the plant. The bast, or raffia-tape, is secured first to the stake and then round the stems.
leaving them loose enough to look natural. One thick strand of bast may often be split into several strands, thus necessitating one piece only being used to each stake.
Larger clumps of plants should be treated with a triangle of bamboos, while sweet peas will be treated as recommended in the article dealing with the subject, and other annuals can be skilfully supported with small twigs of brushwood, as recommended in "Annuals and Biennials" page.
A great living authority has given the suggestion, which she herself carries out with great success, of covering the deficiency caused by early plants "going over" by means of pulling down and training over some annual or other plant of loose habit - as, for instance, montana clematis, tall nasturtiums, or the chalk plant (Gypsophila paniculata).
If flowering shrubs have been introduced these must be kept from encroaching on the flower-border; creepers will also need restriction in the same way.
As the year declines, all withered foliage must by degrees be removed, until the attacks of the frost demolish the last blossoms. Dahlias and other half-tender subjects must then be lifted, cleaned and stored, and the remaining plants attended to, as dividing may be necessary, and forking over the border in preparation for the winter season.
Key to the plan for an herbaceous border described in the article, showing variations in colour from white to deep, full tones. These colours are repeated conversely. The dotted lines represent respectively arrangements of white, pale yellow, blue, pale pink, deep pink, dark yellow, orange, and crimson