Say what... Magazine : 1609
PAG E 22 Say what... Digital Magazine • Issue 33 • September 2016 • • http://say what.nz A monthly guide for new home gardeners. gr ass roots: gardening @ home Time to Plant... September starts to open up the options for planting, with most of the greens and root crops welcoming the wet soil. This is time to lay in brocolli, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, lettuce, leeks, onions, parnsips, potatoes, peas, spinach and silverbeet. You may also want to address the issue of slugs and snails, as the wetter weather gives them plenty of travel, and incentive, to chow down on your delicate seedlings as they raise their heads above the ground. To deter snails and slugs, create a barrier of sawdust and salty nut shells - pistachio shells are perfect. Renew weekly. Harvesting and Maintenance... When it comes to harvesting, it's still the season of the citrus. Now is a really good time, while the soil is loose, to mix compost into your vege beds ready for planting the coming crops. Trim your hedges and shape ornamentals ahead of spring growth. Also be sure to trim vines, especially fruit vines, as flowers and fruit tend to form mainly - if not only - on fresh wood. If you have finished preparing new beds, time to plant new shrubs and trees now. Mulch trees and spray with copper and spraying oil again. Don't let mulch touch the tree though, or it will rot! Lawn Care... As the weather begins to tempt you with brief clear patches, resist the urge to start any major drainage renovations - you'll be half way through the process when the rotten weather kicks in again. For now, get the garden fork out and poke a few hundred holes in the lawn to aerate and provide some short-term drainage. To prevent major damage in the meantime, you may want to consider fencing off some of the worst low spots and just leave the grass unmown for now. When you dig those areas up to lay in the drainage pipes, that extra grass will be good to mix into the soil to improve the water transmission into the soil.