As I write this we are settling into our new house without any lawns or gardens although I have started to prepare the ground by spraying out weeds, adding compost to the soil and bringing up the moisture content so that the soil is easier to work with.

The weather has been very changeable with a lot of cooler winds the odd hot day and not much rain. Not a great Summer so far (although we do have some fine weather on the way I believe!)

The gardens need careful attention to watering with the winds we are having, even more regularly than in other years.

Plants will benefit from more support, especially those that grow fast like Dahlias and Chrysanthemums and other perennials. Also include plants in the vegetable garden like tomatoes, beans and sweetcorn.

Diseases like mildew and botrytis will be less of a problem but insects will be around as usual for the time of the year.

Summer fruits are now in season and should be harvested as soon as they are ripe. Berry fruits are coming to the end of their peak so an addition of fertiliser to encourage growth for next season's crop will be of benefit.

Continue the planting of vegetables for a continuous supply, leeks, silver beet, brassicas, beetroot and celery are some that can be sown or planted.

The lawns are looking very dry and in need of a good watering. Once they are greening up with new growth a fertiliser application will be of benefit.

Pip fruit are developing so keep up the watering so that the trees are not stressed to allow the fruit to get to a good size, they may also need a Summer prune of any strong vegetative growths to let more light on the fruit to achieve better colour.

Summer annuals and perennials are beginning to flower; to encourage continuous flower remove the dead flowers, keep well weeded and watered for the best results.

Happy New Year in the Garden!
Michael Coulter

We want your problems!

Have a gritty garden problem you can't solve — or just need some general advice? Bring your questions to our monthly AAG meeting, post them on HortTalk or email Michael directly a day or 2 before the meeting.

There are plenty of other tasks that need to be done so come to All About Gardening were we can answer your questions or  consult our online facebook group