February 14th, 2021Glen, Around the house
That was just when weather switched to feral Summer and our trees and garden beds were readying for their weather worn, parched faces.
So now we can leave our hoses coiled for just a little longer. Not that we rely on hoses in our garden, except to link our various networks of trickle irrigation to their nearest tap…and a couple of short lengths of those black ‘dribbly’ hoses to trickle around the base of isolated trees and shrubs.
It was nowhere near other area’s massive downpours. But aided by the accompanying lower temperatures, it certainly helped top up our tanks and gives us time to catch our breath before the next wave of heat reaches us. Our gardens certainly appreciated the break.
So best take advantage of the damp, softened soil to prepare your plants for the real Summer weather by getting rid of any weeds and lightly raking or digging over the top soil to gain maximum soakage of any further rain. And be ready to spread mulch over the beds once you are sure the rains are over. Trees and shrubs in particular will appreciate a light dressing of an organic fertiliser at this stage as the present damp conditions will assist in its journey to the roots.
Don’t turn your back on your fruit trees, especially now at the end of their crops. This is a critical time of the year for them as they are recovering from the stress of producing a heavy load of fruit and, at the same time, start storing up energy to see them through Winter and into Spring, and the next harvest.
Don’t rely on the rain or run-off from the rest of the garden. Give them good, soaking drinks by letting a hose run slowly into a shallow moat around their base. Better still, encircle their drip line with a loop of trickle irrigation hose for a frequent session to ensure the soil is kept moist.
Roses should be allowed to rest now after their Spring/Summer burst of blooms, in readiness for their next bout in Autumn. Mulch the plants and ease up a little on the watering. Do not feed them at this time of year or you could encourage a burst of vigorous leaf growth at the cost of plentiful Autumn flowers.
Garden ornaments turning to rust
It seems that gardens, wherever you look, have turned to rusted metal as the theme for furniture or ornamentation, and artisans and garden stockists alike, are thriving on the boom.
And why not? Especially living, as we do, in a rural setting where the landscape is liberally dotted with rusting implements and easy to obtain bric-a-brac, rusted ornamentation is the logical and certainly fitting choice.
Our garden is liberally sprinkled with ‘rustique’ ornamentation – created, found, purchased and gifted over the 35 years we’ve been here. They range from an ornate wrought iron chaise longue down to pendant draught-horse shoes. But the piece-de-resistance is the elegant wrought iron settlers-themed farmgate framed by a fast-growing Renae climbing rose at our entrance, pictured. It was created for us by noted Daylesford sculptor/artist Stefan Nechwatal.
Hi Glen, In the edition dated 4.1.2021 you referred to a “long-handled gadget to remove weeds”. Could you please provide me with the name of the gadget, make and if you know who sells them. You may not know seeing it was a Kris Kringle gift.
Thank you, Tim
Hi Tim, Among the quite varied range of similar weed pullers I’ve experienced, this one, Xact Weed Puller really takes the cake both in design, and ease of operation. It can be obtained from the leading hardware warehouses, also online.
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