July in the Garden

Are you thinking about planting an established tree?

This is a great time to do so. Bare-root trees can be bought from nurseries around this time and is a lot more cost effective. This is because in their dormant stage they can be removed from soil and transplanted to its new position, no pot or soil contained around the root system of the plant, hence saving some added costs by nurseries. Prepare a hole and if needed add some structure to the existing soil with compost and manuer’s. A great advantage of planting trees now is that they have time to settle in before the hot weather arrives, less stress means a healthier growing tree.
Most deciduous fruit trees have dropped their leaves and so they can be pruned now. Just as important is to follow up with a Copper or Lime Sulfur spray to help control rot and fungus diseases. Stone fruit trees also need to be sprayed to avoid Leaf Curl at pink bud stage.

This month is a good time to think about pruning your Roses. Some people may delay until next month with certain types of roses but in general now is the right time. I get asked a lot about how to correctly prune roses so i have added this information again to help some of you out with that.
When tackling roses bear the following in mind;

Cuts should be no more than 5mm (¼ in) above a bud and should slope away from it, so that water does not collect on the bud. This applies to all cuts, whether removing dead wood, deadheading or annual pruning
Cut to an outward-facing bud to encourage an open-centred shape. With roses of spreading habit prune some stems to inward-facing buds to encourage more upright growth
Cut to the appropriate height, if a dormant bud is not visible
Cuts must be clean, so keep your secateurs sharp. For larger stems, use loppers or a pruning saw
Prune dieback to healthy white pith
Cut out dead and diseased stems and spindly and crossing stems
Aim for well-spaced stems that allow free air flow
On established roses, cut out poorly flowering old wood and saw away old stubs that have failed to produce new shoots
With the exception of climbing roses, prune all newly planted roses hard to encourage vigorous shoots
Trace suckers back to the roots from which they grow and pull them away..

To avoid frost damage on your plants give them gently hose them in the mornings with water. Another handy tip is to water them regularly with Seasol. Foliar applications of Seasol is one of the best tools at your disposal to prevent damage from frost. Apply to the point of runoff over all the leaves.
What to plant now Broadbeans, Silverbeet, Spinich, Brocolli, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Spring Onions, Leek, Brown Onions, Spanish Onions, White Onions, Cellery, Peas, Snow Peas, Kale,Dianthus, Viola, Stock, Polyanthus, Primular, Pansy, Snapdragon, Delphiniums, Alyssum, Poppies, Wallflower, Foxglove, Statice, Primrose.

Its also time to get your Seed Potatoes in. Nothing beats fresh home grown produce from your own garden, and potatoes grown from seeded potato tastes so much better than that at the supermarket. There is a selection available here in the nursery to choose from.

Varieties available are- Desiree, Sebago, Dutch Cream, Kipfler, Pink Eyes, Nicola, and a Potato Salad Mix.

Which Potato is best to grow??
Desiree- Red skin, creamy texture. Use- salads, boiling, mashing, roasting, baking.
Sebago- Oval creamy skin, white flesh. Use- salads, boiling, mashing, roasting, baking,chips.
Dutch Cream- Yellow skin, yellow flesh. Use- mashing, roasting, baking.
Kipfler- Long, yellow skin, waxy flesh. Use- salads, boiling, mashing,roasting, baking.
Pink Eyes- Yellow skin, yellow flesh. Use- salads, boiling, mashing, roasting.
Nicola- Yellow skin,cream flesh. Use- salad, boiling, mashing, roasting.

Written by Janine Francis at Viberts Mitre10 Garden Centre Tatura.