To sow this month: broad beans, broccoli, cauliflower,peas, snow peas, radish, rocket, onions, lettuce, swedes, turnips, silver beet, carrots
To plant from seedlings this month: asparagus, Chinese cabbages, broccoli, cauliflower, garlic, lettuce, onions
As always, there is still plenty to do in the garden.
If you’re keen on the idea of homegrown fruit, it’s still a great time to get some fruit trees planted. Choose a nice sunny spot and dig a large hole that’s double the size of the tree’s root ball. Once you’ve placed your tree in the ground, fill the hole with the original soil and top it off with a layer of compost. If drainage is an issue, placing stones at the bottom of the hole before filling can help.
It’s getting to that time to plant potatoes. Start chitting them now, to force seed potatoes to sprout. This takes about 4 weeks. Place them in a single layer in a cool light place, but not in any direct sunlight. Once the sprouts have long and strong shoots, keep the strongest 3-4 shoots and rub off the rest. Then they can be planted out. For fail free results, use some certified seed potatoes, such as Tui Certified Seed potatoes as these will ensure a healthy crop
While your potatoes are sprouting, you can use that time to prepare a bed. Add lots of compost and oragnic matter such as well-rotted manure your soil.
When it’s time to plant your potatoes you can add Tui Potato food to give them an added boost. Dig long, deep trenches in your soil and place your potatoes in the trenches, about 20cm apart. Cover them with about 5cm of soil. As the potatoes grow and green leaves pop out through the soil, keep mounding them with soil. This will stabilize the long green potato leaf stalks and stop the potatoes from reaching the light (which would make them turn green and poisonous).
Plant strawberries now for some early spring treats! Read my strawberry growing post here.
Keep on mulching those garden beds. The weather in NZ hasn’t been too kind lately so to stop that rain leaching away all those nutrients in your soil , get that mulch on.
A not so fun bit. Use the soft soil to your advantage and get on top of your weeding. There’s that old saying, ‘One year seeding makes seven years weeding.’ So heed the advice! It’ll pay off in the end I promise.