This week 13 Oct 2006

  • Resist the temptation to be too ruthless cleaning up after spring bulbs which have finished flowering. They rely on keeping their foliage as long as possible to build up strength for next year’s display. It is best to leave the foliage until it turns brown.
  • If you have bulbs which are charming but threaten to seed everywhere (attractive weeds, really) it pays to deadhead them into a bucket.
  • Clipping box hedges as soon as they have made their fresh growth is the best way to keep the hedge dense and compact.
  • Camellia hedges are putting on their first growth now so it is the time to clip them.
  • Feed roses.
  • It is still too cold to direct sow corn, melons, cucurbits and kumara in to the garden but tomatoes can be planted out now in mild areas.
  • Keep raking the soil in the vegetable garden to stay on top of the germinating weeds. Think of it like vacuum cleaning – best done frequently.
  • Continue with succession sowing of brassicas, lettuces, peas etc. Mark advises protecting early lettuces from pesky sparrows which he wishes had been left in their Northern Hemisphere home.