Celebrating 35 Years of Acorn

Celebrating 35 Years of Acorn

28th Feb 2020

This is a special month for us, we're celebrating 35 years as Acorn Nursery. We opened as a small nursery on the 1st of March 1985, although there has been a nursery on the site since 1968. From humble beginnings, we expanded and diversified over the years to add the gift shop, Oaks Cafe and car park to make Acorn what it is today. 

Our manager Tony has been with us from day one. He exemplifies the passion for gardening and commitment to customer service that really makes our staff special. We're lucky to have built an excellent crew over the years.

We're quite proud to have won Best Large Garden Centre in Australia three years in a row and to be the first inductee to the NGIA Hall of Fame.

We're excited to see what the future brings. Fashions change—currently indoor plants and vegetable gardening are very big—but gardening in one form or another always seems to be popular. We know that high-quality plants will always be winners.

We wouldn't be where we are today without our wonderful customers. Some have been coming in since the start and many others have joined us over the years. Our heartfelt thanks to all of you.

Tony's Tips

March 2020

Wow! What an amazing amount of rain and what a great start to autumn. I can’t remember a greener, wetter end to summer. I always think Melbourne has its best weather in autumn and it is also the best time to do your serious planting. The heat is gone for the next nine months, giving plenty of time for new plantings to become well-established before next summer. It is the start of the new season for cold-climate plants but also plenty of time for warm-season plants too. We should have our full range of new season bulbs available this month, as well as the return of pansies, violas, azaleas and daphne.

A full range of new season seedlings is now available, including our favourite varieties of Pansies, Violas, Primula and Poppies which are ideal for providing colour from now up to spring. New-season veggies are in, including broccoli, cabbages, cauliflowers and three varieties of kale, as well as lots of parsley to replace that which has gone to seed. 

Geranium Cloud Nine is an award-winning cranesbill geranium bearing masses of pale blue flowers from spring to late autumn. It has very few pest or disease problems and is hardy and easy to grow in sunny, well-drained positions. The nectar-rich flowers are also great for attracting pollinators. Slightly taller than its sibling Rozanne, Cloud Nine grows to over 50cm tall and about 90cm wide. Great at the front of garden beds or in pots or baskets, it is regarded as the best double Geranium yet!

Things to do in the garden:

  • Feed almost everything! Most plants and lawns need an autumn feed. Pay attention to citrus, roses, camellias, azaleas and magnolias in particular as they put on a flush of growth in autumn.
  • It's time to plant seeds for sweet peas, broad beans, leeks, lettuces, spring onions, turnips, spinach, coriander and other heat-sensitive plants.
  • Plant bulbs now for a spectacular Winter display. Make sure to chill your tulip bulbs for six weeks before planting to emulate a proper winter.
  • Plant certified seed garlic now in well-drained garden beds or pots with good potting mix. Garlic hates wet feet!
  • This is the best time of the year to do serious planting. Always improve the soil with Zoogro or an enriched planting mix at planting to ensure good root establishment.

Plant of the month

Salvia 'Kisses and Wishes'

Salvia 'Kisses and Wishes'

We have a new release salvia called Kisses & Wishes, its a terrible name but a great plant, sales of which contribute towards the Make a Wish Foundation. It’s ‘Wish’ siblings have been proven performers; I have a Love & Wishes in a terrible spot under a tree and it can flower for 12 months of the year (except when I give it its annual prune). Kisses & Wishes is a lovely soft pink-flowered, vigorous growing perennial Salvia of up to a metre tall by a bit less than a metre wide. A hardy, colourful, long-flowered, and easy to grow plant.