1. Spring-clean your garden! Now is the best time to prune your roses and fruit trees read our pruning guide, here). Also cut back dead leaves, twigs and flowers on all the shrubs in the garden. Remove low hanging branches on big trees that can rob your garden of sufficient sunlight. Getting your lawn in tip top shape is always the best place to start. A well manicured lawn is the showcase of your garden.
2. Fertilise, fertilise, fertilise! We’re talking the whole garden. Water the garden thoroughly and fertilise with 2:3:2 putting down at least 30-40g of fertiliser per square meter in flower beds, veggie patches and the lawn. Remember to fertilise the potted gardens as well. Liquid fertiliser could also be used for container-grown plants.
3. Re-pot or top-dress container-grown plants. Organic potting soil shrink over time and the plants will appear to have sunk in the container. Remove the plants from the pots, replace the drainage material and place fresh potting soil at the bottom. When the plant is put back, the surface of the root ball is +- 15mm below the rim of the container. Remember to add bone meal, this will boost your pot plants. If the plants don’t look their best, re-pot into bigger containers.
4. Plant veggies for a healthier summer! It is now time to blow new life into the veggie garden. Tomato, green peppers and chilli plants will be on the shelves soon. You can start sowing the first pumpkins and butternuts later in the month. Remember to add ample amounts of compost and some bone meal before planting.
August is the perfect time to plant a fruit tree. You can pick and choose – peaches, prunes, apricots, vine, apples and cherry trees can now be planted. They are easy to care for and can be used as a small shade tree. There is no better satisfaction than to pick your own fruit – heck, you can even cook your own jam and save some money.
5. MULCH. By putting down a thick layer of mulch, you will increase the quality of the soil by having higher amounts of organic material, carbon, advantageous insects and earthworms. It will lessen weed germination and water evaporation. Remember: Be careful to loosen the soil, but not to turn it over to frequently. This will cause the earthworms to disappear, the carbon content to become depleted and the soil quality to deteriorate.