NEW FRUIT TREES

NZ Gardener - Garden Diary 2018 - - Growing Tips -

Sum­mer hol­i­days may mo­ti­vate some out-of-sea­son plant­ing. It’s pos­si­ble to plant fruit trees with suc­cess in sum­mer; it just re­quires more care. New trees should have their roots well soaked prior to plant­ing; pop the pot in a bucket of wa­ter for an hour. Dig a gen­er­ous hole and mix in Sat­u­raid crys­tals. Use a strong stake with soft fab­ric ties to pro­vide sup­port. Ap­ply a gen­er­ous layer of mois­ture-re­tain­ing mulch around the base of the tree, clear of the trunk. Wa­ter well once planted, and wa­ter deeply ev­ery two or three days over sum­mer.

Mulch ev­ery­thing

Start mulching be­fore the soil gets too dry. Veges need a con­stant sup­ply of wa­ter through­out sum­mer. Plants that are stressed by a lack of wa­ter are not only less pro­duc­tive, they’re more likely to be mauled by suck­ing bugs like aphids and green shield beetles. Mulching the soil slows down wa­ter loss through evap­o­ra­tion,

sup­presses weeds (and thus stops them tak­ing the pre­cious re­sources your plants need) and, be­cause it breaks down over time, mulch adds or­ganic mat­ter to the soil. You can mulch with what­ever you can get your hands on: last au­tumn’s fallen leaves, lawn clip­pings (but not too much at once), shred­ded card­board, sheep dags, bark or com­post.

This is it! Sow and trans­plant with all your might! It’s warm but not too hot and if there’s plenty of mois­ture in the soil, seeds will sprout and grow quickly. Sow sil­ver­beet, spinach, pars­ley and let­tuce. Trans­plant on damp, over­cast days and watch...

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