GAR­DEN PLAN­NER

Homes+ (Australia) - - CONTENTS - by Mered­ith Kir­ton

What to sow, grow and har­vest in Au­gust.

OR­DER PLANTS

If you’re snug­gled up in­doors, try buy­ing plants on­line in their dor­mant stage, such as de­cid­u­ous maples, fruit and blos­som trees, rasp­ber­ries and grapes. A great re­source is the Flem­ing’s Nurs­eries web­site (flem­ings.com.au). For flow­er­ing peren­ni­als try Lam­b­ley Gar­dens and Nurs­ery (lam­b­ley.com.au) and The Dig­gers Club (dig­gers.com.au).

BEAT BINDIS

Fix bindi-eye in your lawn now so you’re not curs­ing come sum­mer. This painful weed has light green ferny leaves and spreads like a low ground cover. Dig out by hand, or use a se­lec­tive weed­i­cide like Lush from Yates. Seek ad­vice if you want to use a hose-on weed and feed sprayer, as these can kill buf­falo lawns.

PUT IN PRETTIES

De­spite the cold, there are some stun­ners bloom­ing out­side. Camel­lias are flow­er­ing now and many make beau­ti­ful pot­ted plants. Other Asian na­tives flow­er­ing now in­clude quince and Tai­wan Cherry, the first blos­som to open in late July through to Au­gust.

WOW WITH WATTLE

These plants are in full flower dur­ing Au­gust. They are fast grow­ing, per­fect for in­stant screen­ing and pro­vide a won­der­ful habi­tat for seed-eat­ing birds. There are many dif­fer­ent forms, from ground cov­ers to tall tim­ber trees. Go to the Aus­tralian Botanic Gar­dens web­site (anbg.gov.au/aca­cia/) or visit their Wattle Gar­den in Can­berra.

PLANT BROAD BEANS

These are stun­ning when picked fresh, and both shoots and pods are ed­i­ble. Plant in a cra­dle or frame to stop them fall­ing over and pick for weeks – as the more you do, the more you reap.

GROW ASPARAGUS

Buy crowns from gar­den cen­tres, wrapped in peat and hang­ing with bulbs in net bags. This un­der-grown peren­nial needs about a square me­tre patch – and your pa­tience for a few years while the clump thick­ens up. Cut the fresh spears as they emerge at the base and more will sprout.

EN­JOY ENDIVE

It’s worth grow­ing this bit­ter but pretty green, along with its cousins radic­chio and chicory. Plant seed or seedlings and feed with a liq­uid sea­weed so­lu­tion to en­cour­age fast and fu­ri­ous growth.

SOW CAR­ROTS

Sprin­kle car­rot seeds di­rectly in situ – they do well in old pot­ting mix in old poly­styrene fruit boxes. Try heir­loom types, which come in yel­low, pur­ple, red and or­ange.

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