Spring has finally arrived! We can watch the garden awake from its winter slumber and have the opportunity to sow and grow so many fabulous plants. Happy spring gardening everyone!
Grow your own beautiful blueberries
If home grown, freshly picked blueberries sound tempting, then it’s time to find a spot at your place for a blueberry bush or two. Blueberries generally prefer warm days and cool nights. Some varieties require higher levels of chilling hours, so choose a blueberry that’s suited to your climate.
Blueberries prefer an acidic, well-drained soil. In areas with alkaline soil (a pH higher than 7), applications of Yates Soil Acidifier Liquid Sulfur every month will help lower the soil pH. Blueberries can also be grown very successfully in pots. Choose a good quality potting mix, such as Yates Premium Potting Mix, and a large 40cm to 50cm diameter pot to give them enough room to grow.
Blueberries will benefit from regular applications of a complete plant food during spring. Yates Thrive Strawberry & Berry Fruit Liquid Plant Food is ideal for blueberries as it’s fortified with extra potassium to encourage lots of flowers and delicious berries.
As the main mandarin season draws to a close, one of the last varieties bearing fruit during early spring is Richard special mandarins. They have large sweet juicy fruit that are easy to peel, as well as being packed with vitamin C goodness!
Richard special mandarin trees have lovely bright green foliage and grow to around 3m tall. They prefer growing in warm spot (though will tolerate light frosts) and need a sunny location with well drained soil. You can also try growing a Richard special in a large container (a 500 mm pot is ideal) filled with good quality potting mix such as Yates Premium Potting Mix.
Early spring is an ideal time to plant a new mandarin tree, along with all the other fantastic types of citrus. When planting a new citrus tree into the ground, mix some Yates Thrive Natural Blood & Bone into the bottom of the planting hole. Yates Thrive Natural Blood & Bone improves the quality of the soil and supplies the newly planted mandarin with gentle, organic nutrients as it establishes. It’s also boosted with root promoting New Zealand seaweed.
Keep the new tree well watered, particularly during its first summer. Applying a layer of mulch, such as bark chips, around the root zone will help keep the soil moist and protect the top soil and shallow root system. Keep the mulch around 5cm away from the trunk, so that the trunk itself doesn’t stay moist.
Mandarins, like other citrus, are heavy feeders and require lots of nutrients to support all the foliage, flowers and developing fruit. From spring until the mandarins are harvested, feed every one to two weeks with Yates Thrive Citrus Liquid Plant Food. Dilute 2 capfuls into 9 litres of water and apply around the root zone.