The weather might still be icy but we have now passed the Winter solstice and we are on the way to Spring. There’s plenty to do in the garden so check out Tony’s Tips below.
Plastic Free July is a global movement that helps millions of people be part of the solution to plastic pollution – so we can have cleaner streets, oceans, and communities. The month highlights the way that plastic has infiltrated every aspect of our daily lives, and it can often be hard to know where to start when reducing plastic. We like to start small by making simple swaps of everyday items, many of which are available in our Gift shop.
Metal straws are a super simple replacement for disposable plastic ones. They also look gorgeous and are a breeze to keep clean with the included cleaning brush. Enjoy your smoothies, juices, milkshakes or cocktails in style.
Beeswax food wraps are a healthy and sustainable way to store your food and keep your produce fresher for longer. Made from organic cotton and beeswax, they are designed to replace the role of plastic wrap in your kitchen.
It may be midwinter but we’ve passed the shortest day of the year and we can already see some plants moving forward with early blossom and new growth. Deciduous Magnolias are budded up and just beginning to flower, Camellias are in full flower, as are Hellebores and flowering quince.
Magnolias are one of the earliest blossom trees, beginning to flower midwinter and continuing into Spring. They love good drainage so the best way to ensure success is to plant them up on a mound of organically improved soil. We will have these spectacular trees in flower in many different colours throughout July.
Flowering annuals and winter bulbs will progress now that we have passed Winter Solstice and every day is a little longer than the last. Anna’s Red is a standout Helleborus both in flower colour and performance. It’s great to have that sort of warm crimson-red colour to visually warm up a Winter garden. These new hybrid Hellebores are also great as a flowering pot indoors for 3-4 weeks or as a picked cut flower. Even better, they are excellent for difficult dry and shady spots.
If your midwinter garden looks a little dull, add some colour with Primulas, Pansies, Pieris, flowering natives or a spectacular Camellia japonica. Your garden should have something in it that makes you happy every day of the year!
- If you haven’t already pruned your roses do it ASAP. Roses pruned in June will start to shoot in July, which is the time to give them their first feed of the season with a suitable high K rose food
- Protect outdoor Cymbidium orchid flowers from snails with snail pellets
- Start the “blueing” of your Hydrangeas now with horticultural Alum or Blueing Fertiliser
- Start fertilising annuals with a liquid food fortnightly to stimulate new growth and flowers now that the days are getting longer
- Protect your plants from caterpillars by regularly spraying with Mavrik or dosing with Pyrethrum or Derris Dust. Holes in leaves usually mean caterpillars are making themselves at home in your garden
- Treat your lawn for Bindi eye weed with a suitable selective weedicide to prevent thorny seeds in Summer. Bindi likes low mown, hard compacted lawns so discourage it with higher mowing, applying an iron solution and topdressing with sand or gypsum to promote friable soil
- Sow seeds for lettuce, onions, parsnips, climbing peas, potatoes, silver beets, turnips, spinach and all season carrots. For quicker results, we have many flower and veggie seedlings suitable to plant now
- Got moss in your lawn? Treat it with Moss Killer or other appropriate high Iron fertiliser. Moss is caused by poor drainage so for a more long term solution, top dress with gypsum or Lawn Mix
Plant of the Month
The Poet’s Wife
There are many new release roses this year but our rose grower is most impressed with the new David Austin roses. David Austin has the most extensive Rose breeding programme in the world and this year we have a couple of beauties. The Poet’s Wife is the best yellow David Austin bush rose yet with a fabulously fruity citrus fragrance, full golden yellow flowers in profusion on a bushy shrub.
There are lots of good fragrant pink David Austin roses but the new Olivia Rose Austin (named for the granddaughter of the founder) is a very good, fragrant mid-pink rose that starts flowering earlier and finishes later in the season. Longer flowering is always a good thing!