SUM­MER MAN­DARINS

NZ Gardener - Garden Diary 2018 - - Growing Tips -

The main man­darin crops are over, but you can plant the man­darin ‘En­core’ to har­vest fruit from Novem­ber to Fe­bru­ary, by which time ‘Sat­suma’ are al­most ready. ‘En­core’ is a great all-rounder, easy to peel and has sweet, juicy fruit. For ul­tra-small trees (with reg­u­lar-sized fruit) for hand­ker­chief-sized gar­dens and con­tainer grow­ing, look for trees grafted onto the dwarf Fly­ing Dragon root­stock. That goes for all cit­rus. Plant your man­darin in a frost-free spot in full sun and free drain­ing soil. Pro­tect from cold winds and wa­ter well through­out the year.

Sum­mer let­tuces

Switch to let­tuces that cope with sum­mer heat. Tra­di­tional heart­ing let­tuces are great for the cooler sea­sons, but dur­ing sum­mer these tend to get tip burn or rot from the in­side out after rain. Some let­tuce va­ri­eties are much more heatand drought- tol­er­ant than oth­ers. The speck­led red and green ‘Canasta’ (from Kings Seeds) is

one ex­am­ple; hy­brid ‘Salanova’ let­tuces are great too. As well, sow an­nual rocket rather than pep­pery peren­nial rocket for a longer last­ing yield. If you can, plant your let­tuces in the ground. The soil in raised beds and con­tain­ers can get too hot for ten­der let­tuces over sum­mer. If that’s not an op­tion, keep your con­tain­ers in part shade.

Get busy, it’s sow­ing time for all above-ground-pro­duc­ing plants. Sow let­tuce, cauli and cab­bage, spinach and sweet­corn out-of-doors. Gar­den­ing by the moon

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