A good time to fer­tilise

Wangaratta Chronicle - North East Regional Extra - - NEWS -

WELL, spring has ar­rived and bought with it beau­ti­ful mild days and the prom­ise of more to come. Dor­mant trees and roses are burst­ing into new growth and blos­soms are ap­pear­ing ev­ery­where you look. As the weather warms up and plants are gear­ing up for a big growth spurt, now is the time to feed your garden. There are many op­tions with fer­tilis­ers, but this task doesn’t have to be com­pli­cated. There are some plants that need a spe­cific fer­tiliser, na­tives for ex­am­ple, but most plants will ap­pre­ci­ate a com­plete feed at this time of the year. It is im­por­tant to read the in­struc­tions on which­ever fer­tiliser you choose so the plants will get the most out of it and not get burnt or over fed. Yes - you can over fer­tilise. Na­tive pants do not like fer­tiliser that is high in phos­pho­rus so it is im­por­tant to use a spe­cific fer­tiliser in this case. At the end of win­ter, cit­rus trees of­ten look ‘dull’. They may have light green leaves some­times with yel­low veins. This is sure sign that your tree is de­fi­cient and needs mag­ne­sium. Most cit­rus fer­tilis­ers will have the cor­rect bal­ance of trace el­e­ments the tree needs. Mulch and wa­ter the tree well af­ter fer­til­is­ing. Keep­ing the tree well wa­tered is just as im­por­tant as feed­ing it. A cit­rus tree suf­fer­ing from be­ing dry will pre­ma­turely drop fruit or pro­duce dry fruit lack­ing flavour. Fruit trees are be­gin­ning to blos­som which means it won’t be long be­fore you start see­ing tiny fruit form­ing. Feed the tree now with a com­plete feed, keep it well wa­tered and mulch around the base, mak­ing sure to keep the mulch clear of the trunk. Start putting out fruit fly traps. If you have had prob­lems with cod­dling moth in your apples, it is im­por­tant to put strate­gies in place to help pre­vent them in­fect­ing your fruit again. There are a few op­tions for treat­ment so come down and see us at the nurs­ery to dis­cuss which best suits you. If you have large garden beds with a va­ri­ety of plants in them it is eas­ier to use an or­ganic pel­leted fer­tiliser that spec­i­fies on the la­bel that it is suit­able for all plants, in­clud­ing na­tives. There are many jobs to en­joy in the garden at this time of the year not, just fer­til­is­ing, but I will chat about them next time. Happy gar­den­ing.

◆ JUICY: Find the right fer­tiliser for your cit­rus tree is es­sen­tial to grow­ing ripe, use­able fruit. with Mandi McDon­ald GAR­DEN­ING SPE­CIAL­IST

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