With spring officially here, there’s plenty to keep us busy within the garden right now.
Keep planting your brassicas, cauliflower, cabbages. Beetroot, broad beans, lettuce, spinach and silverbeet will all do well right now too. Apply a good general fertiliser to ensure their best possible start. It’s not too late to get your strawberry plants in – in time for Christmas Day lunch. Try some in hanging baskets if you’re short on space. Work on five to six plants per person in the house, to ensure a good supply. Remember to cover them up with netting early too, to keep out the birds. It’s also time to work some spring and summer colour in your flower garden. Your options are endless. I suggest some alyssum, cornflowers, lobelia and sweet peas to get you started. If you haven’t done already, prune the last of your roses. Check for aphids, and use a copper spray to help control the mites and disease. To go natural, planting marigolds near your roses will help deter the aphids too. Applying mulch will help keep the weeds down as it prevents the light getting through to them and sprouting. The warmer weather brings ideal conditions for the weeds to shoot up now, so keep on top of them with weekly hoeing.
Rake up old leaves to let your lawns new spring growth come through. Apply nitrogen rich fertiliser
to give your lawn a re-boot. Fertiliser works best on your lawn when it’s dissolved - so if you’re applying granular fertiliser, do so when it’s about to rain. Turn over your compost monthly, to speed it up. You’ll know it’s ready when it looks like potting mix. Adding a sprinkling of blood and bone can also help speed it up.
Looking forward – come October you can start planting your summer veges and herbs.
Plant beans, peas, lettuce, zucchini, basil and tomatoes. Kamo kamo (similar to a short fat zucchini), red spring onions, capsicums, chillies and cucumbers will all be ready to go in as the ground warms up even more so too. And to get super organised set up your climbing frames for your tomatoes, beans, peas and cucumbers. Trellis netting on a fence works well, or a stand-alone tee-pee system – and both mean you’ll have more room on the ground for future veges. And as for ‘branching-out’ into something new this summer…. I’m going to stake my zucchini and grow them vertically.