Spending time in our homes during this difficult time can only be good for the garden, which, during the drought and water restrictions, has been left sadly neglected.
Yes, I am guilty. My standard roses need deadheading and given a good handful of Sudden Impact and I certainly have been neglectful not spreading around the sugar cane mulch. There are some plusses. You have probably noticed your Magnolia Little Gems bursting into bloom – they have loved the rain and it will help to give them cow manure once they finish flowering to promote new growth before winter.
But what about the weeds? No doubt, as in my garden, they are flourishing in yours – I can’t believe the influx of weeds in the lawn and the garden beds. What to do? Well it’s a great time to exercise, bend our knees, use the trowel or, in my case, they are so bad they need a spade to turn them over to get the roots out.
Huge leafy weeds are growing in the feature pots on my patio. I’ve tried pulling them out but can’t get the roots to budge. No use spraying with Zero as my well established plants will die off as well.
I have to admit I’m not a great fan of organic products but, in desperation, I took home Weed Blitz by Amgrow home from the nursery.
Wow! It works, but I spray on a sunny day early in the morning and watch them shrivel. Okay, they do grow again but out comes the Weed Blitz. I’m not giving them a chance to choke my potted plants.
One of my greatest pleasures at this time of year is watching the Sasanqua Camellias begin to bloom – unfortunately, a hedge down my drive has become a home to paspalum, which is easily pulled out but will continue to grow.
Sasanquas are one of the hardiest plants to grow. I have them from white, to pinks, singles and doubles. They don’t mind the full sun or shade but, when they finish blooming, trim and feed them with cow manure, unless in a pot, then use a slow release fertiliser.
The warmth of autumn and the rain has caused my Golden Duranta hedges to throw out long untidy shoots, which will need a good clip back, together with the buxus hedge.
Look around your garden and, like me, I’m sure you will find plenty of jobs, many of which will give you much-needed exercise during our restrictive period.
Visit Sharpe’s City Gardener‘s Facebook page if you’d like to get in touch.
* Cyclamen are in season – great for colour inside. Don’t overwater as this will cause the crown to rot. They like a well lit spot inside and an occasional night out in a sheltered spot in the cold.
* Check for snails before planting vegetables and flowers.
* Divide overcrowded agapanthus.
* Don’t forget to prepare to plant poppies on Anzac Day. Dig in poultry manure and leave at least one week before planting.