With wetter weather around it is harder to get out in the garden, a good time to do some planning with a cup of tea in hand! Frosts and snow will be about in some areas, when in doubt cover and protect all your hard work.
Key points for this month:
- Prune Hydrangeas back, until you see two fat buds, which will be next seasons flowers.
- It's time to plant new strawberry plants.
- New citrus trees can be planted now.
- Prepare vegetable and flower gardens for spring planting.
- Plant summer flowering bulbs.
- Plant new trees and shrubs.
- Feed all existing trees, shrubs and fruit trees with slow release fertiliser.
- Plant seed potatoes.
- Fertilise your lawns now.
Prepare your soil; once it is dry, remove all the weeds and dig the soil over. Break up any lumps and bumps with your spade. Add compost and sheep pellets and dig through the top layer of soil.
New citrus trees can be planted now; keep them out of the wind.
Plant new Strawberries, add strawberry food to the soil as you plant and at the same time give your older plants a side dressing. Pinch out the very first flowers to let the plant become more established, you will get a better harvest.
If you are using your homemade compost dig that in now, it will need a few weeks to settle before you plant. If you want to start making your own,
Rhubarb can be planted, add blood and bone to the soil as you plant. Use the blood and bone around existing plants as well, water in the fertiliser.
Herbs can go in the ground or in pots, most herbs are companion plants to vegetables so keep them close to maximise their benefits.
New season Feijoas can be planted, add blood and bone to the soil as you plant. Feed your existing trees with a long term fertiliser.
Plant sprouted seed potatoes now, add a side dressing of potato fertiliser to the soil as you plant. Protect new shoots from any late frosts.
Plant seedlings: Broccoli, cauliflower, leeks, silverbeet, onion, spinach, cabbage, lettuce.
Sow peas, they prefer the cooler early spring weather. Plant the seeds directly in to the ground. Protect from any frosts.
Sow seeds: Cabbage, kale, cauliflower, lettuce, celery, onion, broccoli, silverbeet, carrots and spinach. Protect from the cold, transplant to the garden as the weather warms and when they are showing at least two sets of true leaves.
Protect all seedlings from slugs and snails, they love tender seedlings and the wet weather.
Feed your passionfruit vines with citrus fertilise, they are heavy feeders so be generous.
Remove old winter annuals when they have finished, freshen the soil with compost and sheep pellets ready for spring plantings.
Sow seeds: Alyssum, californian poppy, cosmos, marigold, petunia, phlox, portulaca, salvia, and snapdragon. Protect from the cold and transplant to the garden when they are showing at least two sets of true leaves.
Plant seedling: Pansies, primroses, marigold, nemesia, viola, polyanthus, cineraria, stock, alyssum, delphinium, cosmos, and carnations.
Plant summer bulbs, Gladioli, Dahlia, Begonias, add bulb food to the soil as you plant.
Plant new roses; make sure the soil around them is nice and firm. Apply some compost around the roots of your existing bushes; lightly fork this through the soil.
Spring bulbs will benefit from a top dressing of bulb food.
Perennials can be lifted and divided, replant straight away.
Tidy up your containers and scrub off any moss that has grown over winter, freshen the soil add new fertiliser, replant with spring annuals if necessary.
Trees and Shrubs
Take advantage of the warmer weather and plant new shrubs and trees, stake where necessary.
Tidy up and prepare garden beds for spring planting. Remove weeds and enrich the soil with compost and sheep pellets.
Feed all existing shrubs with a slow release fertiliser.
New leaves will be starting to burst on your deciduous trees. Check and prune any branches that were damaged over winter.
Take advantage of the new spring growth and fertiliser your lawn now. Apply evenly across the whole lawn and water in.