Planting time is here now Spring is in the air!

Cucumber plant and mulch

For us Melbournites, it’s been a long Winter – and a wet one. When we go to plant our edibles, it’s easy to forget that the garden will need watering! The combination of recent windy days with warmth has shown how quicly soils can dry out.

A checklist of things to attend to to keep your garden and plants in shape include:

  • Getting your garden beds prepared for planting
  • Putting in irrigation
  • Adding mulch around plants
  • Adding compost to the soil
  • Looking at having a wicking bed or two installed

The first one is pretty obvious. It’s time to plant, so get those garden beds ready! Tomatoes should be going in now and should be planted with plenty of organic matter. Make sure you water them at soil level. Don’t water the leaves, so that you avoid diseases.

Talking about watering, properly installed irrigation saves on water and time, compared to hand watering. Dripline is the best of these. Make sure you put in the dripline before planting your vegies!

When preparing your beds, make sure you incorporate compost and perhaps some well-rotted manure. Cow manure works well and is milder than chook manure. Mulch is an essential to help the soil retain moisture and encourage microbial life.

Our favourite option is to use wicking beds. You can see how enthusiastic we are about these, since they produce more vegies in a smaller space and using half the water – an all-round winner! Because the beds are raised, they also make for easier planting out. For more on wicking beds, take a look here.

Urban Shepherd can do any or all of these jobs in your garden – or work with you to help you do them. We can also help you if you have a deck or paved area by installing a wicking planter box. Give Paul a ring on 0408 733 683 and let him know what you would like to achieve in the garden.

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