Shrubs that are planted in this time will maximise growth over the next few months and present beautifully for Summer. Climbing plants thrive in the warmer months so get your Mandevilla, Allamanda and Bougainvillea climbers in now! Perennial petunias planted in October will regain long lasting colour into the warmer months. Flowering plants such as Phlox, Ageratum, Dahlia, and Impatiens can be sowed during this month.
For a healthy Summer ready garden, vegetables will need to be sown into warmer soil, more than 20 degrees, so pick a warmer October day and introduce your beans, sweet corn, tomatoes, zucchinis and melons. When planting tomatoes, plant them in a spot that hasn’t had tomatoes planted there for at least 5 years and alongside some basil which supports the healthy growth of the tomato plant and repels pests.
Tropical fruits will also excel in growth when planted in October. Sow your lychees, mangoes and custard apples along with your vegetables for a huge choice of healthy options from your very own backyard!
October is also the perfect time for maintenance of existing potted plants and fruit trees. Head into Donnelly’s and grab some All Purpose Food, Citrus and Fruit Food or Natural Natives for your fertilizer. Apples and Pear trees will need protecting from coddling month during the month. Place a band of corrugated cardboard around the trunk to trap wandering caterpillars. During Spring Pests and Diseases will take over if you don’t stay on top of your spraying.
There are lots of products available at Donnelly’s to help you tackle this. We have Yates Scale Gun RTU, Lime Sulphur, Wettable Sulphur, Pest Oil, Eco Oil, Complete Bug and Insect spray Imidacloprid and Natural Pyrethrum. All of these will help combat the pests and we have a range of fungicides to help combat disease. Prune back frost damaged parts of the plants now we are entering the warmer part of the year. Remember an unhealthy plant will attract pests and diseases and this is why fertilising to keep plant health up is crucial.
Get out the secateurs and prune back tired old citrus trees, renewing their mulch and feeding them with Fruit and Citrus food and Organic Fertiliser. Keep in mind though, a severely cut back tree may not yield a crop for a few seasons. Prune your spring flowering roses and heritage roses after flowering. Apply Yates Rose Gun to protect their new growth.
Use an array of good quality products such as a Rapid Soak Granular Soil Wetter around established plants, and a Thrive All Purpose Soluble Fertiliser for watering of your Hydrangeas. Yellowing of old gardenia leaves is a sign of short term magnesium deficiency, water with a weak solution of Epsom Salts and or give them a feed with Camellia, and Azalea food. Apply Bluing Soluble Fertiliser to produce and deepen blue coloured flowers or apply Liquid Lime and dolomite to change flowers pink.
As spring flowering slows, clean up your garden beds, use quality fertilisers and build up the soil for summer plantings. Head into Donnelly’s for more expert advice!