Gar­den Cal­en­dar

It’s the start of au­tumn and time to get ready for win­ter, but there’s still room for a touch of sum­mer.

NZ Lifestyle Block - - Contents - Words Jane Wrig­glesworth Jane Wrig­glesworth is a gar­den­ing writer, blog­ger, and pub­lisher of the dig­i­tal mag­a­zine, Sweet Liv­ing. www.sweet­liv­ing­magazine.co.nz www.flam­ing­petal.co.nz

- jobs for March

- 2 veg­eta­bles to spice up win­ter

Plant cel­ery and keep well wa­tered.

With­out mois­ture, stalks are of­ten small and bit­ter. Lack of or ir­reg­u­lar wa­ter­ing can also lead to a cal­cium de­fi­ciency, which in turn re­sults in ‘black­heart’ where the heart of the plant turns black. Cel­ery is slow on the up­take of nu­tri­ents in the first half of the grow­ing cy­cle, but the rate of up­take be­gins to ac­cel­er­ate in the lat­ter half. Be­fore plant­ing, dig com­post and blood and bone into your soil. Start feed­ing with a fer­tiliser that’s high in ni­tro­gen around 40 days af­ter plant­ing.

Mol­ly­cod­dle your cap­sicums.

Low tem­per­a­tures dur­ing flow­er­ing can re­sult in pointy ‘ tails’, or three or even two-loculed fruit (as op­posed to the usual four). Con­versely, high tem­per­a­tures (30°+) may re­sult in blos­som drop. Pro­vide warmth or shade as needed. If blis­ters ap­pear on the skin (sun scald), pro­vide shade from the af­ter­noon sun. Wa­ter plants reg­u­larly as cap­sicums, like toma­toes, are prone to blos­som end rot (of­ten caused by stress from dry con­di­tions).

Di­vide peren­nial herbs

such as sage, rose­mary, thyme, mar­jo­ram and chives and re­plant. Al­ter­na­tively, take cut­tings (rose­mary, thyme and mar­jo­ram), or layer sage.

Sow let­tuce, spinach, spring onions and peas di­rectly into the ground. Car­rots, parsnips, beet­root, swedes and turnips can also be sown di­rectly, but avoid highly fer­tile soils or fork­ing of roots may oc­cur.

Sow co­rian­der for au­tumn har­vest­ing. In warmer ar­eas you can also still sow a quick crop of basil.

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