in the gar­den

Better Homes and Gardens (Australia) - - Outdoor Inspiration -

Colour up your spring with con­tain­ers filled with sea­sonal bloomers. You’ll find polyan­thus, prim­ula, cineraria, neme­sia and lots more in nurs­eries now.

Plant edi­ble flow­ers

for adding vis­ual zing to your cook­ing. Good starters in­clude scented gera­ni­ums, nas­tur­tiums, pot marigolds (Cal­en­dula of­fic­i­nalis) and bor­age.

Re­pot plants that are get­ting too squeezy. Ei­ther plant into larger pots or, if nec­es­sary, care­fully trim the out­side of the root­ball and slide back into the same pots. Ei­ther way, work in new pot­ting mix.

Con­sider a hot dis­play of dahlias for late sum­mer, by plant­ing them now. Be­fore plant­ing tu­bers, dig in plenty of com­post to give them a good start.

Save toi­let rolls to pro­tect newly-sown seeds. Bury the rolls ver­ti­cally four-fifths

deep into the soil and sow a few seeds into the top of each. In time, the rolls will rot away, leav­ing the seedlings hap­pily grow­ing.

Smarten gravel paths

by spray­ing weeds with a her­bi­cide or, for a more eco-friendly op­tion, pull them by hand. Treat na­tive plants to a shap­ing spring clip, to en­cour­age fresh growth. If they’re in flower, wait till af­ter the blooms have fin­ished.

Give gar­de­nias a post­win­ter check up. A good tra­di­tional pick-me-up, if leaves are yel­low­ing, is a dose of ep­som salts mixed in about nine litres of wa­ter.

Feed lawns now with a good or­ganic fer­tiliser. Also, raise mower blades a few ex­tra cen­time­tres, to pro­tect soil from sun and re­duce evap­o­ra­tion of mois­ture.

Start early toma­toes

out­doors. In cooler re­gions, hold your plant­ing un­til about Mel­bourne Cup Day (6 Novem­ber).

Treat flow­er­ing roses

to a ra­tion of rose food. And don’t be afraid to pick a few flow­ers for an in­door vase dis­play.

Flow­er­ing plum

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