RIG UP A POLY­TUN­NEL

NZ Gardener - Garden Diary 2018 - - Plant Now -

Keep your let­tuces and herbs snug for speedy sal­ads. A sim­ple row-long cloche, made by drap­ing frost cloth or clear plas­tic over bent wire hoops, will keep the soil sig­nif­i­cantly warmer head­ing into win­ter. Peg down the sides and tie up the ends to stop cold draughts. On warmer days you'll need to open it up to al­low for ventilation. Di­rect sow mesclun salad, rocket, win­ter let­tuces, spinach and baby beets – or keep your seed trays and small pots un­der cover to has­ten ger­mi­na­tion. A plas­tic cover means no wa­ter will pen­e­trate, so don’t for­get to wa­ter!

Deal to blue­berry rust

If your blue­berry plants are sport­ing rust on their leaves, deal to it with Yates Na­ture’s Way Fun­gus Spray or cop­per oxy­chlo­ride. Both can be ap­plied dur­ing au­tumn or win­ter. If you spray ear­lier, make sure you check the with­hold­ing pe­riod if the plants have fruit. At the same time check your plants for weak

branches. Prun­ing of blue­ber­ries should be lim­ited to re­mov­ing weak or dead branches and to open up the bush if it be­comes very dense. Fruit is borne on sec­ond year wood, so if pruned reg­u­larly you won’t get any fruit. It’s quite nor­mal for some limbs to be more vig­or­ous, al­most like wa­ter shoots – of­ten they are the best fruiters, so keep those!

Cul­ti­vate but don’t sow any­thing. Gar­den­ing by the moon Feed plants with a liq­uid fer­tiliser. Full moon 2.20am

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