Our grounds team have a great deal of experience providing grounds maintenance and landscaping services. We share their June gardening tips here.
by Jeremy Mather
May has seen conditions certainly change to be more winter-like. Days are shorter, nights are cooler, and there has been an increase in showers of rain. Although, we have not had any substantial rainfall in May, there has been enough for soils to get some more moisture into the top profile. At my place just south of Pakenham, the top couple of inches of soil is moist, but still very dry below that. At the time of writing this post however, there has been some substantial rainfall across the state which no doubt has helped gardeners and farmers alike!
The cooler conditions and shorter days have also certainly contributed to the increase in leaf fall from deciduous trees and shrubs since last month. Grass growth has also slowed. Cool season grasses will continue to grow, but at a reduced rate. In some areas, kikuyu and paspalum have changed colour, while other sheltered pockets remain green, but slowing in growth rate.
Now is the time that the structure of the gardens becomes increasingly evident. Leaves are dropping, and in general, flowers are finishing. Shaping of shrubs, different foliage colours and shapes all ensure that gardens still look good through the winter months.
June Gardening Tips:
- Now is a good time to fertilise your camellias and azaleas. Remember to use specialised fertiliser as these plants enjoy soil on the acid side. Organic pellets will be fine but if purchasing something, try the specialised fertiliser.
- Keep the fight up against snails and slugs as for last month. Other pests do slow down now as it is becoming too cold, however, if you have any broccoli, cabbages or cauliflower growing, keep checking for the green caterpillars from the cabbage moth.
- If you have some empty pots or space in your garden, now is the time to plant seeds for pansy, poppy, granny’s bonnets and calendula. If you want some herbs or vegies at hand, try coriander, spring onions, lettuce and the cabbage family.
- Now is the time prune camellias and any native shrubs that have finished flowering. You can just give the plant a light prune, or give a more substantial cut if you need to reduce the size of the shrub.
- If you have space, bare rooted plants will also become available soon. Ensure the planting holes are well prepared with good compost or aged manure. Remember to water in well to remove any air pockets and do not stomp too hard on the soil when planting.