Let the summer harvest begin

By Harmony Garden Centre

SUMMER is a vibrant time in both the kitchen and garden thanks to the abundant harvest of all the warm season vegetables and herbs.

Its a great time to plant French and climbing beans, broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbage, Chinese cabbage, capsicum, cauliflower, celery, cress, cucumber, eggplant (advanced seedling best), leek, lettuce, spring onion, parsley, parsnip, pumpkin, radish, swede, silver beet, turnip and sweet corn.

And what a fashion comeback brussel sprouts and kale have made over recent years. Both are now declared to be super foods and are filled with healthy goodness.

Brussel sprouts take between 100-120 days from planting to harvesting. Give them a prune in early March to reduce the height of the plant and encourage better sprouts.

They love a little hit of winter. As leaves start to yellow and wilt, it indicates time to pick your flavoursome crop. Give them a go.

Keep you garden dazzling

Here are some summer tips to help to keep your summer garden dazzling through the warmer months:

  • Regular deep watering in the cool of early morning or evening will allow the soaking of the roots with minimal evaporation.
  • Applying a water retention product such as Saturaid to our lawn and soil can reduce water use by up to 50 per cent. This is a great way to save on water costs and make full use of those summer rains.
  • Lift the mower blades. This creates a natural protection of the lawn’s root system and minimises evaporation.
  • Move potted outdoor plants into areas that are shaded from the hottest part of the day.
  • Ensure that watering systems are working correctly without leaks or blocked nozzles.
  • Control weeds in the lawn with Yates Bindii and Clover killer.
  • Mulch, mulch, mulch. This is great for saving precious water and making the most of any summer rains.
  • Prune annual plants as they start to finish flowering and feed with bloom booster to promote more flowers.
  • Remove any stone fruit that have signs of brown rot, be sure to spray these trees in winter with Kocide. Ask us how, if unsure.
  • To control insects and disease on tomatoes, treat with Yates low toxic, dual action tomato and vegetable dust.
  • In dry hot summer conditions, citrus require special treatment and the risk of disease, leaf drop or impact on fruit yield is high. Ask us about watering and fertilising your citrus, as we have specific information depending on your situation.
  • Spray apples, pears and hawthorns with Yates Success to control pear and cherry slug. If you don’t want to spray, dust with flour or wood ash or remove by hand.
  • Continue to fertilise tomatoes, capsicum and eggplants with a high potassium enriched fertiliser, as this will ensure more flavour and plenty of fruit.
  • Rose pests can be controlled with Amgrow Rose spray, all-in-one fungicide, miticide and insecticide.
  • Cabbage moth can be controlled with either Yates Success or Derris dust.
  • Harvest beans and other summer veggies regularly so they’ll produce more crops.
  • With our cooler September, many tomato plantings happened later than normal. They should now be thriving and showing some fruits for your labour. Fertilise with a high potassium fertiliser as the fruit sets.

Harmony Garden Centre is located at 450 South Arm Road, Lauderdale. For more information, visit www.harmonygc.com.au.