From Jon Lamb Communications
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June 5, 2020

Welcome to winter!

Right on cue, the last leaves on deciduous fruit trees are falling – to be followed closely by those remaining on deciduous ornamentals.
At the same time, garden centres are now cramming their shelves with an amazing range of deciduous fruit trees, vines, roses and ornamental shrubs.
Take a close look at the plant labels, as a rapidly-growing range of new dwarf, compact, high-performing plants has been released, specifically for gardens where space for traditional size plants is a limiting factor.

Dormant fruit trees arrive for weekend planting

We have just been advised by the major supplier of deciduous fruit trees, Balhannah Nurseries, that they have been able to supply most garden centres with a full range of deciduous fruit trees – just in time for the coming long weekend.

Pruning is not compulsory

While many gardeners can’t wait to start pruning, in reality there are only a few types of plants that really benefit from winter pruning. 
Essentially, we’re still talking deciduous – all roses, many fruit trees, but only some (deciduous) ornamentals.
Resist any temptation to administer a short back and sides to evergreens, as they will produce little new growth between now and spring.
You could end up with a visual disaster.

Worth considering

The general rule for deciduous fruit trees is to prune anytime during winter but with spring flowering deciduous ornamentals, wait until flowering is over, otherwise you could remove some of the coming season’s display. 
In many cases, particularly where fruit trees produce plenty of short “spur” wood, there is no need for regular pruning. 
Usually shaping and removal of weak or diseased branches is all that is needed.
 More on pruning ornamentals over the next few weeks.

Pruning tools - the “essentials”

What pruning tools do you need and how much should you expect to pay?
Regardless of the task, a good pair of secateurs is essential.  
If you have fruit trees or large shrubs to contend with, add pruning loppers and a quality pruning saw to the list.
Experienced gardeners look upon pruning tools as an investment. 
They know quality tools will last much longer than those sold at bargain price.
Pruning tools made by reputable companies will also be designed ergonomically, making the task easier and at the same time reducing user fatigue.
Feature plantsof the week

Sunsatia for outstanding winter colour

Sunsatia have been selected for their ability to provide stunning winter colour in containers.
These previously unavailable colours are best described as vivid, luminous and bright as well as soft, subtle and in shades of pastel.
Sunsatias are in fact a much improved form of perennial nemesias and look great when grown in large pots, planter boxes and hanging baskets as well as raised garden beds.
Grow the plants in full sun during winter although they will benefit from light shading through the warmer months.
Sunsatias are easy to grow (avoid wet feet) and produce a compact (25 x 30 cm) canopy.
The flowers are self-cleaning and will continue to bloom through winter spring and early summer.

Proven WinnersSunsatias are in stock at Heynes Garden Centre, Norwood and Semaphore Pets & Gardens and should be available at other good gardening centres.

Location important for winter vegetables

The key to growing vegetables successfully through winter is to find the sunniest spot in the garden where there is little likelihood of water pooling when it rains.
If the area picked out for growing vegetables gets a little muddy during winter, try growing your plants in a raised bed. 
Raised soil drains excessive moisture more rapidly after rain and is more easily warmed by the sun.

Variety selection                   

If your raised bed is relatively small, give priority to varieties that are either dwarf, compact in shape or capable of producing high yields from a relatively small space such as peas, mini cabbage or some of the ‘cut and come again’ vegetables, including silverbeet and non-hearting lettuce.
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Cold and flu-fighting herbs

The idea of growing herbs recognised for their medicinal properties has considerable appeal. 
While caution is needed in this area, there are a number of herbs recognised for their health benefits.
  • Echinacea – antibiotic and reduces flu symptoms
  • Garlic – antibiotic, expectorant, helps prevent colds
  • Horseradish – helps reduce symptoms of flu and sinusitis
  • Hyssop – for treating coughs and bronchitis
  • Lemongrass – for fever and infections
  • Sage and thyme – antibiotic for throat and mouth infections.

Diggers garden shop set to reopen

The popular Diggers garden shop, based in the Adelaide Botanic Gardens, will reopen to the public next Saturday, June 13.
And the Diggers online shop is also back in action.
It can deliver its full range of seeds, bulbs, plants and hardware direct to your door.

More information »
Life in the soil – Neutrog
nematode control

Controlling nematodes in your garden

Nematodes or roundworms are almost microscopic worms – the majority of them can be beneficial as they help break down organic matter and control pests such as insects.
However, there is one group of nematodes which are real troublemakers .
They attack and feed on the roots of plants, and if their numbers explode, the damage to roots can kill young plants and stress older plants so they become prone to diseases.
So how can we control these damaging nematodes?

More information »
Fruit tree advice

Garden fresh peaches for that taste of summer

Eating a ripe peach – picked fresh from the garden in summer – surely one of life’s great pleasures.
Yet, peaches are so easy to grow. They are also available in a huge range of varieties that either have yellow or white flesh and ripen from early December through to early April.
While peaches can be eaten fresh they are great when cooked or dried. You may also like to try peach juice – it’s great.
Peach trees are quick to mature and most varieties don’t need cross pollination.
Old favourites include:
Anzac  still one of the best early white flesh peaches available. Freestone.
O’Henry (pictured)a great tasting large yellow flesh, freestone.
Jackpot discovered in South Australia. Ideal late season yellow flesh freestone.

More information »

Premium locally grown stock from Balhannah Nurseries are available now.
Best time to plant bare-rooted trees is June to August. Look out for the green bag.
It's Balhannah Nurseries' guarantee of a premium fruit tree.

Leaf dots key to soursobs identification

If you think your garden beds and lawn have suddenly been invaded by clover, take a close look at the leaves.
If you can see numerous small black dots, the invasion is actually from the dreaded soursobs.
More information on controlling soursobs in my Advertiser gardening column, tomorrow.
Lawn Care – Stefan Palm, Paul Munns

Preserving winter lawn colour

As autumn morphs into winter, temperatures fall and the temptation is to remain indoors in air-conditioned comfort.
But give some thought to our summer-active lawns grasses.
For the next 3 months they have no option but to remain in the cold and simply “sit it out”.
As turf advisor Stefan Palm points out in this week’s lawn blog, when temperatures fall during winter, summer-active lawn grasses all too often lose their attractive green colour.
Stefan discusses the challenge of keeping warm season grass’s green while it’s cold.

More information here »
Paul Munns Instant Lawn

Tepid water for houseplants 

Indoor pot plants don’t grow much during winter when they are cold. 
Don’t aggravate the situation by pouring cold water from the tap onto their roots. 
Research has shown that lukewarm water will keep them growing, or at least happier until the warm weather returns.

Please keep your questions for Talkback Gardening

Good Gardening  is unable to answer individual reader's questions via email.
If you're looking for specific gardening advice please give me a call on ABC Radio Adelaide's Saturday morning Talkback Gardening  or speak to the experts at your local garden centre.

Talkback Gardening tomorrow

ABC Radio Adelaide Talkback Gardening this Saturday, 8.30 am to 10 am – phone me and Deb Tribe on 1300 222 891 and have your own gardening question answered.

Standby for a cold, wet winter
Consulting climatologist, Darren Ray provides home gardeners with detailed information about the rain, temperatures and weather anomalies that are likely to come our way.

Garden centre directory

Leading Adelaide garden centres recommended by Good Gardening newsletter.

Heynes Garden Centre

Heyne's Garden Centre
Everything you need for a great winter vegetable garden is in stock now.
283-289 The Parade, Beulah Park.
(08) 8332 2933
South Australia's oldest established garden centre. Huge range. Expert staff on hand for personal advice. Visit online »

Semaphore Pets & Garden
Semaphore Pets and Garden
119 Semaphore Rd, Semaphore. (08) 8242 7302
Just arrived in time for the long weekend – an outstanding range of new-season, barerooted fruit trees along with a very wide selection of well grown Australian native plants.
Always has a great selection of plants, pets and giftware – all under the one roof. Facebook »
Weather forecasts

Coming soon – send us your diary  dates

Gardening activities returning
As gardening organisations, and particularly garden clubs, resume normal activities they are invited to send details of forthcoming events to Good Gardening, once their activity dates have been confirmed. Email us »

Regular garden attractions

Some of our listed regular attractions may have closed or have limited access, due to the COVID-19 situation.
Please check with the relevant organisation.

Adelaide Botanic Gardens – free guided walks
Friends of the Botanic Gardens of Adelaide guided walks for the public at Adelaide, Mount Lofty and Wittunga Botanic Gardens, and Botanic Park.
More information »

Carrick Hill

Heritage house museum and garden, the former home of Sir Edward and Lady Ursula Hayward. Open weekends & public holidays. Free admission into garden and grounds. 46 Carrick Hill Drive, Springfield.
More information »

Cummins Historic House and gardens
23 Sheoak Ave, Novar Gardens. Gardens open and plant sales on 1st & 3rd Sundays of each month (except Dec & Jan) 2 pm - 4.30 pm. Plant sales also available every Friday morning 9 am to noon. More information »

Heysen - The Cedars
The historic home of two of Australia’s most noted artists, Sir Hans Heysen and his daughter Nora. This unique 60-hectare heritage estate features the original family home, two artists’ studios and the celebrated cottage-style garden, planted chiefly with exotics, including the massive Himalayan cedar trees.
Heysen Road, Hahndorf. Open 10 am - 4.30 pm, Tuesday to Sunday, and also open on public holiday Mondays. Ticketed entry, including guided tours at 11am, 1pm and 3pm.
More information »

Urrbrae House historic precinct gardens
At the end of Walter Young Avenue, off Fullarton Road, Urrbrae, or from the Urrbrae House gate, Claremont Avenue, Netherby.
Open from dawn until dusk every day. Free entry.
More information »

Waite Arboretum, Fullarton Road, Urrbrae
Open free to the public every day of the year from dawn to dusk, except on fire ban days. Free guided walks on the first Sunday of every month, 11 am to 12.30 pm.
Meet at the West lawn (Croquet Lawn) of Urrbrae House. Bookings not necessary.
More information »

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Disclaimer: Although all reasonable care is taken in preparing information contained in this email, neither Jon Lamb Communications (JLC) nor its officers, staff or suppliers involved in the editing and production of this email accept any liability resulting from the interpretation or use of the information set out in this document. Information contained in this document is subject to change without notice and is of a general nature and should not take the place of professional personal advice. No responsibility is accepted by Jon Lamb Communications for the accuracy of information contained in web sites linked from this email. Publication of an advertisement does not constitute endorsement by JLC of any product or service, or warrant its suitability.

Copyright © 2020 Jon Lamb Communications, All rights reserved.

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