Blink and its upon us. Spring is a beautiful time of year and with a little help from you, your garden will reward you.
We certainly have had a hard winter when it comes to the plants. The temperatures have stayed high so making your plants wonder if they should be in dormancy or not. So, with this, let me cover off on a few things to help your garden.
Tip #1: Tidy up your flower beds and borders
Nothing fancy here, just a good general tidy up. Remove leaves and other debris from your flower beds and borders. Cut back the old dead growth of deciduous grasses and herbaceous perennials. Clear borders and beds back to bare soil and remove any weeds you can see and dispose of them. Note: don’t compost your weeds if composting is your thing, the seeds will germinate and cause you more problems later on.
Next, work your soil and dig in a 5cm layer of organic matter – such as well-rotted manure, compost or recycled green waste. Finally, apply a good layer of mulch (75mm) to the gardens as this helps suppress weed germination and also hold back that valuable water within the soils rather than losing it to evaporation as it heats up.
Tip #2: Hunt down and remove garden pests
Hunt down and remove those hibernating pests. Take a closer look at the crowns of your perennial plants and check for any slugs, snails and aphid colonies sheltering ready to enjoy feasting on your plants. The White Vine Weevil larvae are always on the hunt for new plant stock and can cause a lot of damage. Sadly, not an easy one to get rid of. As when in their larvae stage, they are underground attacking the root system. However, if you use Eco Neem this suppresses the appetite of the insects and as they love to munch, this is a good thing.
Tip #3: Make grass greener (and the envy of your street!)
To get your grass going, get out the garden fork and aerate your lawn. In early spring, apply a weed killer to remove broadleaf weeds and that pesky bindii. Follow up a few weeks later with lawn fertiliser to keep the grass growing strong and prevent new weeds. When the leaf starts to show signs of growth, consider applying a top dress of quality lawn soil but not to cover the leaf. If you use the back of a rake the soils will quickly fall down in between the leaf. If you have some bare patches or want to start a whole new lawn from scratch, now is the time.
For new lawns, loosely turn the soil below and then level out and then apply new lawn top dress soil prior to placing the lawn rolls to the area. Note: make sure you ‘but’ the rolls together as there is always an element of shrinkage to the rolls as it dries. On the note of drying, as we are very much in the grips of water restrictions, please click here to find out what watering conditions are in place for new lawns.
Tip #4: Fertilise
Before the growing season gets into full swing, just about everything will appreciate a good dose of fertiliser. Blood and bone and dynamic lifter are perfect for Australian natives. Just throw a handful over every four-square metres. Dig compost and manure through the veggie patch and soluble fertilisers to any veggies that you already have planted.
Potted plants will love liquid fertiliser for a quick boost and a dose of slow release fertiliser to keep them going. Use specialist fertilisers for roses, citrus and orchids as they contain the particular nutrients these plants need. A trick for your Bougainvillea to flower – use Yates Thrive as this promotes flower growth, ordinary feed will only promote growth.