Today’s I’d like to help you get your garden ready for the really cold winter months that lie ahead.
If you have any annuals in your garden, they will be coming to an end very soon. It is advisable to pull them up and put them on the compost heap. Now is the time to start planting your winter and spring flowering annuals, such as Alyssum (Heuningblom), Bellis (English daisy), Delphinium (Elegant queen of the border), Dianthus and Foxglove.
As the cooler months approach, some of your perennials will begin to fade. Now is the time to cut down the flowering stems to ground level and remove old leaves. Examples of plants which you can apply this to are Agapanthus, Guara (Butterfly bush), Lavender, Osteospermum and Statice. Garden areas with these plants should be mulched with compost at this time of year.
Looking to plant some bulbs? Get your hands dirty welcoming plants like Hyacinth, Tulips, Sparaxis, Dutch Iris, Allium, Amaryllis, Babinia and Freesia into your garden.
April is also a great time to mulch and compost around your trees and shrubs, as many of the large trees are deciduous (lose their leaves in winter). Watering can reduced to once a month for the large trees. This is great news in view of the drought situation around the Highveld this year.
You can also start preparing your lawns for the cold months by giving them their last feeding. You can either use 2:3:2 Vita Grow (general garden slow release) or you could try 5:1:5 Vita Green (lawn and general slow release). Watering should only be done one to two times a week, but remember that we are still experiencing water restrictions, so it is best to water at 6am or after 6pm!
Wanting to test your green fingers and use your own plants in winter soups, stews and casseroles? Then now is the time to plant your broad beans, dwarf spinach, garlic, lettuce, leeks, peas, Swiss chard and turnips.
Remember to keep up to date with clearing your gutters of leaves, especially as the gorgeous hues of orange and red take over the trees in our cities. Also take note of the damp areas on walls that would have been caused from the last rain – as we experience less rainfall it is the best time to do all of your DIY tasks as well as to paint your exterior walls too.
Ciao for now!
Who is Nicholas Spargo?
Nicholas Spargo, owner of Spargo Landscape Consultants, has been in the landscape trade for 12 years as well as being a lecturer at the Lifestyle Garden Design Centre for the past year. He was awarded a Gold for a design at the Lifestyle Garden Design Centre Design Show in 2008, is an Invasive Species Consultant and is affiliated with the South African Green Industries Council.
Landscaping and education are very close to his heart.