Centrals Tips - September 2021
The growing season has started – control aphids and feed citrus and berry plants and stake fruit trees. There’s a great variety of vegetable seedlings available now and it’s a good time to sow pumpkins.
Weed control now will reward you in a few months with desirable plants having plenty of room to grow. Plant spring flowering shrubs, adding water granules. Stake tall growing perennial plants so they don’t fall over in spring winds.
In the Edible Garden
- Check for aphids on young seedlings, particularly brassicas – carefully wipe them off or spray with a natural pesticide.
- Feed strawberries and blueberries now; also citrus which require plenty of food as they begin to flower.
- Stake newly planted pip and stone fruit varieties as spring wind can destabilise them and halt growth.
Pumpkin patch: got a spare sunny corner of the garden, where a crop can spread? The dig it over with some compost and sheep pellets and sow some pumpkin seeds. You’ll need to spread pea straw when the pumpkins start to form in early summer.
Seedlings of old-fashioned tomatoes, capsicum and other summer crops are available at garden stalls at farmers’ markets now. Plant in directly into Garden Mix in a sheltered are, placing tender young seedlings under cloches (cut off plastic drink bottles will do).
Get the leafy herbs cranking: coriander and parsley are best planted before it gets too warm – but basil is much more susceptible to cold, so wait a month or so.
Liquid feed all edible plants with Aquaticus Garden Booster, particularly at the root area as everything begins to grow.
The rest of the garden
Great time to control weeds emerging in your lawn – options include spraying with Prolawn Broadsword, using an organic weedkiller such as Green Demon or spend a few therapeutic hours digging them out. Re-sow bare areas with some lawn mix and seed.
Pretty spring-flowering shrubs enhance the seasonal change. Californian lilac (ceanothus), Mexican orange blossom (choisya), viburnums and lavender all provide good early spring displays.
Place stakes alongside tall growing perennials such as delphiniums, heleniums, salvias, phlox etc. These plants grow quickly and new growth can be soft, so they need anchoring.
Water-wise: use Aqua Turf Max granules in the planting holes to enable plants to maximise use of water, as it gets hotter.
Feeding garden trees and shrubs is best done now. Roses, which use a lot of food to produce their beautiful blooms, will benefit from both food and a dressing of sheep pellets.
Project for September
Construct a wicking bed: If you’re planning a raised vegetable bed then consider one that ‘self-waters’ from below rather than above. It’s basically a bed with water reservoirs at the base. Moisture is drawn up through the soil via a process called capillary action or wicking. You’ll need sleepers for the beds, scoria and Garden or Veggie Mix, plus piping etc.
Watch this video on how to make your own wicking bed from recycled IBC containers: