Ready for a winter growth spurt


By Kevin Redd

Hello gardeners- here we are in early winter in our warm climate gardens.

This is the time of year when we look to planting many of the more ‘cool climate’ style edibles and also a wide range of ornamentals that might take our fancy in this more mild season.

So what should we be doing in the garden now?

First and foremost, this is a time to ‘tidy up’ after what was a great season for the GROWTH of many plants (even those unwanted weeds that escaped our notice!). So get out there and have a look at your ‘patch’ and make some notes about what you’d like to see growing in the next few months… Also lots of our faster growing plants have sprawled and rambled this summer due to mild conditions and LOTS of rain…so don’t be shy about giving them a bit of a ‘haircut’.

What should we be planting now? This is a great question and we always ask ‘food gardeners’ about what they BUY at the shops or in the local markets. These are always the first things we should plant ourselves…so that we can grow our own food and be less reliant on the shops! Usually we find that lettuces, greens like Kale and spinach and fresh herbs are the best place to start in the home food garden.

For everyone north of Coffs Harbour, this is a perfect time to put in things like tomatoes, basil, lettuce, kale, silverbeet, capsicums and those sorts of things. More adventurous kitchen gardeners should try the ‘Asian’ greens like Bok Choi, Pak Choi and Tatsoi which germinate quickly from seed or grow fast from seedlings at this time of year. The soil and sunshine will also still support putting in herbs like chives, oregano and even coriander.

If you are more of an ‘ornamental’ gardener, there will be a huge range of lovely plants that can go in now- and what a perfect time to check out your local nursery- their stock will be looking good for winter blooming plants like Bouganvillea and those hardy foliage plants – such as Cordylines and Stromanthes which often look amazing as the weather cools off slightly.

So make the most of the cooler days at this time of year and get out into the garden to make big progress!

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