Winter is a great time to get into the garden and have a good clean up before the rush of spring is upon you.
Look for those sunny winter days, rug up, and here are some jobs to get you inspired.
1. Check your lawn for mossy patches and water-logging. Aerate the soil with a garden fork or lawn aerator to improve drainage and the overall health of your lawn.
2. Prune hydrangeas, removing spent flowers to two fat buds, don’t be afraid to prune quite low if necessary. Leave any stems that have not flowered this year, they will flower next year. If you want blue flowers in summer, start applying hydrangea blueing solution now.
3. Prepare any unplanted garden beds, digging in plenty of Black Gold Compost, this will get your plants off to a fantastic start when it comes time to plant them.
4. Go for a walk through the garden with a pair of secateurs and a pruning saw, removing any dead and diseased branches from trees and shrubs. Make sure it’s a nice clean cut, and for large branches, apply Steriprune to seal in the wound and prevent rotting.
5. Late June and July is a great time to prune your roses (see our post on rose pruning). Once you have pruned them, give them a spray with lime sulphur and pest oil for diseases like black spot and pests like mites and scale. Follow the directions on the packaging for winter spraying, and aviod using different sprays together. With no foliage, it’s a great opportunity to get into the nooks and crannies. Once roses start shooting, feed them with an application of Sudden Impact for Roses.
6. Look for winter flowering shrubs like daphne and hellebores to plant now. Hellebores look fabulous mass planted under deciduous trees. Plant some winter colour, like pansies, polyanthus, primulas and violas, to brighten up the garden. Feed fortnightly with good quality liquid fertiliser, to keep them blooming until spring. Remove spent flowers, and don’t forget the slug and snail pellets!
7. Ever thought of owning an orchid, but thought it was too hard? Well one of the easiest orchids to grow, the cymbidiums, are available now. Choose from a variety of colours, each spike lasting for many weeks. Once the main display is finished, just pop in to the garden. Ask our staff for more details.
8. The productive garden is back in vogue, with carrots, beetroot, silverbeet, spinach, lettuces, rocket, peas, broccoli and many other varieties suitable for planting now. If you don’t have a designated vegetable garden, slip some multi-coloured silverbeet, beetroot, and lettuces in amongst the flowers. The foliage is quite stunning and you get to eat it too! Many vegies are also suitable for container growing. Nothing is as satisfying (or delicious) as eating your own produce.
For more inspiration and advice of what you can do during these winter months, drop into or call Gill’s Nursery. A tradition of quality and service.
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