Monday, 6 April 2015

In My Garden in April 2015

“That evening was the evening of the full moon. The garden was an enchanted place where all the flowers seemed white. The lilies, the daphnes, the orange-blossom, the white stocks, the white pinks, the white roses - you could see these as plainly as in the daytime; but the coloured flowers existed only as fragrance.” 
Elizabeth von ArnimThe Enchanted April

March was such a hot month that I put off starting my vegie garden until April.  Mid-April is generally considered the end of our wet season.




The Swamp Bloodwood have been flowering. Apparently they are easy to grow from seed. 

Last month I did some soil tests for my permaculture course. I now know a lot more about my soil, I will share more about the soil tests - what I did and the results - in a future post. My soil does need a lot of amending however I think I will be covering how to improve my soil in a future unit of my course. 

Here is my list of things I would like to do this month.

Planting


Tino on Gardening Australia prepared his soil for planting by mixing half a barrow load of compost with 1/2 a bucket of cow manure and about the same of well rotted chicken manure, 2 handfuls of blood and bone, and three handfuls of pelletised chicken manure to make sure the plants were fed for a longer period, and one handful of sulphate of potash. He then dug the mix into his soil.  This was for a garden bed of about two square metres. 

Tino said that the bed would be ready for planting out straight away.  Here is the link if you want to watch that segment of the show. If you are not familiar with the Gardening Australia website, and you like gardening, you may want to check it out. The site has oodles of information and videos from the show.



I would like to plant the following this month:

Zucchini - though it is normally thought of as a summer annual, here we can plant it from April through to July (some sources say it can be sown all year in our area) due to our mild winters.

Tomatoes - I really wanted to plant some tomatoes last month but as I mentioned it was really too hot to do so. I am not sure what varieties I am going to plant, but I do want some cherry tomatoes.

Strawberry runners - I will plant these about 30 cm's apart and then apply some blood and bone and cover with lucerne or sugarcane mulch. I am thinking of putting them in some large pots I have rather than into the garden beds.

I would also like to plant some Borage if I can find some at the nursery. Failing that I will try planting from seed.




Pruning


All of our mango's need pruning, but one tree in particular still needs heading back as Don didn't get to that last month.  The rest of the mango's can just have a bit of a tidy up with the removal of inward growning and downward growing branches.

My hibiscus need dead heading, and my salvias need a really good pruning, as does one of my duranta's




Fertilising


I need to fertilse the mango and stone fruit with something like Organic Xtra. I can also feed the citrus trees and spray with white oil to control citrus leaf miner.



Weeding


Everything needs weeding. The advent of the cooler weather should mean the weed growth slows down for a while.


What are you doing in the garden this month?




14 comments:

  1. wow nice long grass/tree snake there?
    am also preparing one of my beds for vegies, though i just put paper & cardboard down then the all the bedding from the chook shed, it won't be ready for a while yet, then i'll hopefully have some compost by then to put on top. need to fence it off from the chooks again, let them play in it for a few days but now it needs to sit.
    your garden is looking lovely, flowering gums are adorable, don't often see the red ones, all ours around here are white.
    thanx for sharing

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    1. Yes he is a nice looking snake. He was hanging around an empty compost bin the day I saw him.
      I am looking forward to getting a vegie garden started. It's been a while for me since I have grown any. I am rethinking growing the strawberries in pots and considering putting them in a raised bed as I have just remembered my dog likes to pick the strawberries when they are ripe, but she may be over that habit now she is older. She also has a thing for eating hibiscus flowers but I think she only does that when she has an audience!

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  2. Sherri,
    Thanks for the Gardening Australia link. I also know you can get Borage seeds online through ebay for next to nothing. It's apparently a useful plant. And you can have the snake. Yick.
    Hope you had a happy Easter with you and yours.
    -Shiralee

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    1. The Gardening Australia website is terrific. So many videos, so little time. I hope you had a lovely Easter also.

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  3. I tried to comment this morning on Bloglovin but once again it wouldn't work properly. I might give it a miss at this rate as the new App update just isn't working. Anyway, what I wanted to say was how come you got so close to that snake? I can't stand snakes. I am no Bindi Irwin. LOL!

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    1. I took that photo a couple of months ago, I was pretty sure it was a green tree snake but I stayed well back anyway. I took a few photos, and then left it alone. I am really very wary of snakes, and try to keep reminding myself to look up and check that none are overhead in branches and watch where I am walking.

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    2. I wondered if it was a snake - typical of Sherri....slides a little bit of excitement into the photos, but says nothing :-)

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    3. He really was a pretty little fellow, of course he could have been a she. I wasn't using that compost bin at the time, so he was welcome to hang around there.

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  4. Wow thanks for the tips on getting the soil ready for growing, thats quite a lot of organic matter added there. I'm thinking about buying some bags of horse manure from down the road to add to my veg patch soil. I couldn't grow anything this summer either, way too hot. Looking forward to trying again this autumn. Hope your veggies go well.

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    1. I have a couple of raised garden beds and I picked up some garden soil for those beds which I understand has all the goodies added already. The lady who runs the nursery supplies an organic garden soil mix - no chemical or synthetic fertilisers, so it should be good plant into straight away. This may be the week to start as after a very hot couple of days with humidity at around 80 percent, the cool change seems to be here finally.

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  5. I have never had my soil tested... but I think I really should. Was it difficult?

    Gardening season is just kicking off here in Denver - I've got spinach in the ground and hopefully I'll get some peas planted today. Trying to prepare the beds for the warm weather stuff. This year I'm gonna try peppers in containers rather than the ground. I have a friend who made hers grow over 5 feet tall with tons of fruit that way, and since my attempts at growing peppers have all been miserable failures, it couldn't hurt to try something new!

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    1. The soil testing wasn't difficult but it did take me quite a while to do the tests. I am going to do a post sometime (probably next month) about the process I followed.

      Wow fancy pepper plants growing over five feet tall! That's amazing. Maybe I should try growing some in pots too!

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  6. I like Organic Xtra too Sherri. Works a treat. My poor citrus are in a mess despite using eco-oil. Lots of citrus leaf miner and mealy bugs. I have an ant problem also. Very frustrating! I gave them a feed last week, so maybe that will help.

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    1. We seem to have had an increase in fruit fly this year too. Our neighbours have also mentioned the increase in fruit fly.

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