Our green-thumbed expert Meredith Kirton shares her tips and to-do list.
What to do in the flower beds and vegie patches this month.
Grass benefits enormously from aeration. If you have a lawn, consider hiring a roller with steel tines that will lift out plugs of earth and help your turf recover from compaction.
Attach some seaweed solution to your garden hose and give everything – from fruit trees to ferns and even lawns – a spray with this plant tonic. Your garden will love it.
As the weather becomes milder, think about planting some flowers for winter. Pansies and violas add a touch of colour and, if you have a sunny fence, sweet peas will bloom all through winter and into spring.
Start composting your fruit and vegie waste and grass clippings, and get your worm farm going in preparation for autumn’s leaf drop. If you’re in a block of flats, consider lobbying strata for an Aerobin or Hungry Bin – both are selfcontained and really easy ways to turn kitchen scraps into compost and save green waste from the tip.
IN THE VEGIE PATCH WEEK 1
It’s time to plant peas. Make a beautiful tripod out of bamboo and grow something really special, or simply roll out a piece of trellis against a fence and let the pea tendrils cover it in no time. The more peas you pick, the more you get plus the new shoots and sprouts are edible, so nibble away!
Prune back herbs and remove any flower buds to encourage fresh, tasty growth. And don’t waste the leafy trimmings (see tip).
Before planting cauliflower, brussels sprouts, kale or cabbage, add lime or dolomite to your vegie patch and dig through well. These help to correct soil acidity and make it easier for plants to absorb nutrients and grow.
Plant a quick crop of lettuce and other greens anywhere you’ve had beans or peas growing.
They enrich the soil with nitrogen, making it perfectly nutritious for leafy greens.
Quality time Make gardening a family activity, and a way to teach kids about healthy habits.