From Jon Lamb Communications
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June 14, 2019

It's fruit tree planting time

Garden centres have just received huge stocks of dormant but ready-to-plant apricots, peaches, plums, cherries, apples and other deciduous fruit trees.
For the next eight to 10 weeks they will remain dormant, providing home gardeners with an ideal planting opportunity without the risk of set-back associated with moving plants while they are growing.

Before planting – good advice 

Before planting, take the opportunity of loosening the soil.
But dig wide not deep – half a metre either side of the planting hole and no more then 3-5cm deeper than the plant’s root system.
If the subsoil is hard-setting, loosen with a mattock to improve aeration and draining. 
Do not replace subsoil with potting mix or garden soil.
Most plants will benefit considerably if you improve the top soil before planting by incorporating up to 30 percent by volume of composted organic matter, (compost or soil improver).
Organic matter will not only improve the health of your soil, it also holds up to 10 times its own volume in moisture.
Soils containing clay, i.e. hard setting (or poorly drained) should be improved by adding gypsum (1 kg /sq. metre).

Cross pollination may be a factor

Many, but not all, fruit trees require cross-pollination – two different varieties of the one type. 
If space is at a premium, consider planting fruit trees that do not require cross-pollination. 
The list includes apricots, most peaches, nectarines, citrus and most (but not all) evergreen fruit trees.

SACWA Rose – it’s a great choice

This is an elegant Hybrid Tea rose with dark velvet petals and soft, sweet perfume – a fitting choice to pay tribute to the women who support the SA Country Women’s Association.
The bushes are very vigorous while the blooms are large, sweetly scented, long lasting and rain-resistant.
The SACWA rose also produces stout shoots, with plenty of basal shoots making it an ideal bedding or specimen plant. The blooms are on long stems, ideal for cutting.
The South Australian Country Women’s Association (SACWA) has been serving the community since 1929. It is a not-for-profit organisation, made up of volunteers who work to promote the welfare and conditions of life for women and children of all ages, in the city or country.
SACWA is celebrating its 90th birthday in 2019. This rose will be promoted and used to raise funds for the many programs that support rural aid for farmers across Australia.

More information »

Plant pruning pointers

When is the best time of the year to prune or trim trees and shrubs in your garden?
You don’t need an endless list if you can remember the following guidelines:

Deciduous trees and shrubs
(Excluding those that flower in spring)
This task is best carried out in mid-winter – certainly before mid-August, as this is when plant sap begins to flow.  Some plants including vines, walnuts, birch and maples may bleed sap if pruned late in winter

Spring-flowering deciduous
Wait until the blossom begins to fall.  But, don’t delay any longer as new growth follows very quickly.  Winter pruning will remove potential flowers.

Hardy evergreens
These should be cut or trimmed immediately after flowering, regardless of the time of the year.

Frost-tender evergreens
Those that flower in autumn, winter or early spring should not be cut until the danger of winter and spring frosts are over.

Tropical summer/autumn-flowering
Warm loving shrubs such as hibiscus and frangipani are best pruned in mid-spring, well after the frost season.

More pruning pointers over the next few weeks
Feature plant
Elite White Iberis

Bright white Iberis

A mass display of bright white blooms in the garden looks quite amazing.
And this effect is easily achieved with Iberis “Elite White”.
Iberis sempervirens “Elite White” is a recently released, relatively low growing but compact, perennial (20 cm x 50 cm).
Given the right conditions “Elite White” will flower almost non-stop all year round, although the main display begins late in autumn and continues through winter and spring.
This is an easy care plant to grow in the sun or part shade. It looks great planted as a low border or perhaps mass planted under standard roses or garden trees.
Excellent in pots and a useful plant to brighten up the patio area, as bright white flowers certainly stand out in the garden.
As a bonus Iberis flowers also attract beneficial insects.

More information »

Peas are sure to please

Peas, like broad beans, are another easy to grow vegetable that produces pods that can be eaten whole or left to develop sweet tasting seeds. 
Like broad beans, the plants absorb nitrogen from the air so the material left behind after harvest should be used for composting.
Because peas mature over a relatively short period, it’s best to sow a small area often.
Sowing in June and July should see the plants flowering after the worst of the frosts but before the hot weather sets in.
More on winter vegetables in my Advertiser gardening column tomorrow.

Call for Royal Show horticulture entries

Horticulture competition entries for the 2019 Royal Adelaide Show are now open. 
Sections include bonsai, orchids, bromeliad, cacti, succulent camellia, daffodil, ferns, trees and shrubs, Australian native cut and blooms, potted plants, floral art and more.
Keen gardeners and even not so keen gardeners of all ages are encouraged to have a go. 
If you have a favourite potted plant or a camellia in the garden that you know flowers in early in spring why not consider entering it – you never know you may be lucky enough to pick up a prize.
Entries close on Friday, July 19.

Information on how to enter and the full competition schedule here »

New strawberry varieties 

In recent years, plant breeders have developed a new type of strawberry referred to as “ever bearing or “day neutral” (fruit production is not dependent on day length).
These have the potential to produce fruit in waves from spring through to late autumn, whereas traditional varieties produce most of their crop during spring or early summer.
Top ever-bearing varieties include:
  • Alinta – Australian-bred. Large glossy berries with excellent flavour and disease resistance.
  • Hokawise – Medium sized, bright red fruits with delicious acid-free flavour.
  • Red Gauntlet –  Still a traditional favourite, producing medium sized sweet fruits on vigorous plants but only pre-Christmas.
Lawn Care – Stefan Palm
lawn drainage waterlogging

When the lawn becomes waterlogged

After a record dry start to the year, well above-average rainfall during May surprised most gardeners.
With further heavy falls this week and more rain expected next week, don’t be surprised if some gardens end up with a drainage problem.
In this week’s lawn blog, turf advisor Stefan Palm considers this possibility and, in particular, the effect of drainage problems in the lawn.
Stefan also considers what you can do if the lawn does end up waterlogged.
Find out more and catch up on Stefan’s recent blogs relating to managing lawns through winter here »
Paul Munns Instant Lawn

Quick winter fix

If you need to stimulate winter growing plants such as vegetables and flowering annuals, try spraying their leaves and soaking their roots with a liquid, soluble fertiliser.  A liquid seaweed product can be added as it will increase your plant’s tolerance to cold.
Orchid Club of SA

Orchids – how to cope with winter

By Trevor Garard, President of the Orchid Club of SA
If you are growing orchids in an area that has frosts make sure they are protected.
Watch out for slugs and snails and also hard to see green caterpillars. These need to be dealt with quickly,  as they can cause a massive amount of damage in a very short time.
Cool damp conditions are also a signal for the possible onset of fungus and bacterial rots.
Use a fungicide if needed, while good air movement around your plants will help prevent these problems
Zygopetalums are particular susceptible to black spotting on their leaves.
Plants that need a rest during winter should be put in a position where they will not receive too much water or fertiliser.

These flower in winter

Cattleyas, Laelias , Zygopetalums early Cymbidiums and the increasingly popular Stenoglottis species.
For those growing Australian and other terrestrial orchids, following the rains, keep an eye out for the first sign of new leaves.
Don’t miss the Orchid Club of SA Winter show on July 6 and 7 at the Enfield Community Centre. (See Coming Soon.)

More information on the Orchid Club web site »

Why not plant a fig tree

Winter is the right time to plant figs. While the trees are quite large they are easy to grow and very productive.
Most varieties will produce two crops in the one season, the first early in summer with a second late in autumn. 
Best home garden variety is Adriatic but don’t overlook Black Genoa and Brown Turkey.
Once established, adding a small quantity of organic fertiliser in spring (when mulching) and an occasional deep watering during the summer months will be repaid with bigger, better crops.

Keeping indoor plants happy

Houseplants prefer to be kept warm during winter but heaters make the air very dry and this can result in the tips of some plants turning brown. 
Try misting the plants with water as soon as the heater is turned on in the morning and again early in the evening.

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.
Saturday, Sunday, June 15, 16
SAROC Orchid Fair
Drill Hall, Torrens Parade Ground, King William Rd., Adelaide. Saturday 9 am – 5 pm; Sunday10 am - 4 pm. More information »
Weekend gardening weather

Talkback Gardening tomorrow

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

Guest – John Plummer, United Nurseries SA, wholesale supplier of vegetable, flower and indoor nursery plants.
Topic – Secrets for growing garden fresh strawberries at home.

Coming soon

Sunday, June 23
Urrbrae Wetland Open Day
Cross Road, between Harrow Tce and Fullarton Rd. Illustrated talks, guided walks, self-guided visits and special children’s learning activities.  Gold coin entrance. 1.30 - 4 pm

Saturday & Sunday, July 6, 7
Orchid Club of South Australia's winter show
Enfield Community Centre, 540 Regency Road, Enfield. Orchid culture demonstrations 3 times daily. Plants and accessories for sale and expert advice from the growers. tea, coffee and food available. Entry $5.

Saturday & Sunday, August 10, 11
Annual Camellia Show, Camellias South Australia annual show
Carrick Hill, 46 Carrick Hill Drive, Springfield. Sat. 12noon - 4 pm; Sun. 10. am - 4 pm
Quality plants for sale. Free admission to the show & Carrick Hill grounds.

Saturday & Sunday, September 7, 8
Enfield Horticultural Society Spring Show
Klemzig Community Hall, 242 North East Road, Klemzig. 12 - 5 pm Sat, 10 am - 4 pm Sun. Admission $2. More information 8251 2299.

Saturday, September 21
Spring Garden Festival, Mount Pleasant
Stalls featuring quality plants, garden furniture, decor and garden-care products.
Showgrounds, Melrose Street. 8 am - 3 pm. $5 entry, concession $3, child under 15 free.
More information »

Saturday & Sunday, October 12, 13
Spring Expo – Native Flower Display & Plant Sale
Australian Plants Society (SA Region). Adelaide Showgrounds. Sat.10 am - 4 pm; Sun. 10 am - 3 pm.

Saturday & Sunday, October 19, 20
SA Geranium and Pelargonium Society spring show
Payneham Library complex, corner O.G. Road and Turner Street, Felixstow. Plant sales & display. Entry $3.

Burra Spring Garden Expo and Open Gardens
More information »

Sunday, November 10
Art and Roses at The Cedars
Heysen Road, Hahndorf. An exclusive one-day celebration of  spring in the garden of the renowned father and daughter artists Sir Hans and Nora Heysen. Featuring reproductions with real flowers of the artists' still life works, display of heritage roses, talks on art and blooms.
10 am - 6 pm. $15 (children under 15 free) Includes entry to the garden, house and studios.

Regular garden attractions

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 »

The 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 »

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 »


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 © 2019 Jon Lamb Communications, All rights reserved.

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