Continue to clear wallflowers and tulips from to make room for the next plantings. The cold weather still hanging around in mid-May has held back many seedlings, but if you see signs of hardy annuals coming through where you have sown them in open ground, thin out the seedlings before they become straggly.

Start to earth up early potatoes. Sow runner beans outside, if you have not already started them off in boxes inside. If you want a double row, set the seeds about eight inches apart in two lines a foot apart. A wigwam of canes takes up less space. Push in the poles about eight inches apart in a circle and tie them together securely at the top.

Make further sowings of lettuce and radish. Buy Brussels sprout plants, choosing ones that have been grown in open ground if possible. They make straighter, tougher plants than seedlings grown in trays.

Take cuttings from the juicy new shoots of fuchsias, hebes and potentillas. Take basal shoots of fuchsia for cuttings when they have about three pairs of leaves and stick these round the edge of a pot. You can get four cuttings in a three inch pot of compost mixed with sand or vermiculite to improve drainage. Cover the pot with a plastic bag. The cuttings should have rooted in 2-3 weeks.

Bamboos can mostly be left to their own devices, but if you want to spread your stock, now is the time to split up clumps, replanting the fresh pieces in earth beefed up with plenty of bonemeal.

Trim wall and rock plants such as aubrieta, arabis and alyssum when they have flowered. This keeps the clumps compact and fresh.