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Thursday, January 21, 2021

Garden chess

If we get some good rain, March is the ideal time to move plants that aren’t doing exactly  
what you want.

This doesn’t apply to natives – they hate to be transplanted and generally show their objection by dying.

For example, perhaps you planted a Golden Duranta in the middle of a bed of gardenias – not good forward planning as the duranta is yellow and will soon overtake the gardenias in growth.

Think of your garden as a chess board; don’t hesitate to move the players around.

After moving a plant, prune off some of the top growth in comparison to any root damage; apply Seasol to stimulate new root growth; and, most importantly, water thoroughly on a daily basis.

Although white and green still tend to dominate garden design, I love blocks of colour to highlight the gardens beds, favouring pink, but I love blue in the garden. It is a cooling colour, but it is nature’s most unusual shade.

Mauves and purples tend to dominate the palette of blue hues, extending from the palest lobelia through to the magnificence of iris and salvia.

Annuals are great to provide variation; try African Queen Marigolds as a background for blue  

Intense blue flowers need paler contrasts such as silver-leaved plants, lavender, cineraria and silver falls.

This week

  • Begin to fertilise citrus. Those grown in pots should only be fertilised with a slow-release product, not citrus food. Ground-grown plants need to be fed with poultry manure, followed by citrus food several weeks later. Both need to be applied under the drip line and watered well.
  • Lawns still need attention, still suffering from army grub and lack of rain. Keep treating the grub; use Seasol to stimulate root growth, fertilise and water, water, water.

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