Brr! Winter is officially here, but that doesn’t mean it’s time to hibernate from the garden. In fact, quite the opposite. Now is the time to think of the season ahead. Here are Metropol’s tips for keeping on top of your topiary this June.
Clean up stations: As the leaves keep falling in their autumn glory, it’s important to clean them up. Fallen leaves on lawns prevent all-important sunlight reaching the grass, stunting its growth and creating a great environment for disease to thrive. Likewise, keep on top of those pesky weeds, too.
Flower power: The skies might be turning grey imminently, which is all the more reason to brighten up your flower beds with pops of polyanthus, primula, pansies and violas. It’s also time for most garden centres to roll out their new season roses, so keep your eyes peeled for your prickly favourites so you don’t miss out their prime planting time.
Get pruning! As the trees finish fruiting, it’s time to give them a new season haircut! Cut stems back to a healthy growing bud and seal the cuts on larger stems with pruning paint to protect against disease. Pro tip: keep those secateurs and loppers clean with white spirits to prevent any diseases transferring. You are also going to want to sharpen those tools for neater cuts which also deter disease.
Edible plantings: Most pip and stone fruit trees will be losing their leaves and going into a dormant state for the next few months. All deciduous fruit trees can be planted now, while still dormant. In the vege patch, it’s garlic planting time! Earmark the shortest day to plant these aromatic bulbs to harvest on the longest day in December. Don’t stop planting those winter staples like spinach and leafy greens and brassicas.
Frosty reception: While the true winter weather might not set in for a while yet, the frosts will start to creep in (if they haven’t already). Protect those frost tender plants with frost cloth or covering. If you don’t have, or want to invest in, frost cloth, you can also use old blankets, sheets or burlap sacks. Just make sure to drape them loosely and secure with stakes, rocks or bricks.