Digger Dan’s May gardening tips

The Fruit & Vegetable Garden

  • Fallow veggie beds – ‘resting’ your edible garden over winter, particularly where there’s less sun on it, can be a good idea. Remove finished plants and dig in some Living Earth Compost (available from our yards by the bag, the trailer-load or home delivery). For raised beds this is very important, as the organic matter in the garden mix is often used up in the growing season and it needs replacing.
  • Sow a green manure crop – it’s not too late to put in a mustard or lupin crop over winter to assist in a nitrogen ‘fix’ in your soil. Dig the lupins in once they’ve grown to knee high.
  • Shape woody herbs – clip back thymes, rosemary and sage that have become unruly.

    Rainbow Chard

  • Slugs and snails – control them with bait now to prevent damage to brassicas and lettuces.
  • Dramatic vegetables – Coloured stems of Rainbow Chards, Cavalo nero, the black cabbage and red cabbages and kales look great in the winter vegetable garden, so plant some now.
  • Autumn Fruit- if you’re enjoying the bounty of seasonal fruit around now: feijoas, walnuts and persimmon to name a few, it’s a great time to plant young trees of your favourite variety. Seek advice from your garden centre as to where best to plant them and whether planting more than one is a good idea – and remember Living Earth Compost in the soil!
  • Spraying copper over fruit trees – is a great clean-up spray to do now, gather up diseased leaves and lightly fork compost around the trees.

The Rest of the Garden

  • Prune – deciduous trees and shrubs after the leaves have gone.
  • Flowers:  last chance to plant spring flowering bulbs and a great time to get annuals such as primulas, poppies and stocks in pots and garden borders. Always liquid feed at planting time and again a couple of weeks afterward.
  • Feeding – don’t waste money on chemical fertilisers that may not be used by the plant once it gets cold –  boost them at the root zone with Living Earth Compost or Liquid Compost
  • Leaf fall – falling leaves can be gathered into the compost heap or put in black plastic bags to break down to leaf mulch over winter (discard those that are diseased). Remember the tough, leathery leaves of evergreen trees such as pohutukawas take much longer.
  • Weed control: Getting rid of some of the more tenacious winter growing weeds, particularly onion weeds and oxalis, leaves space for plants to grow into. Mulch after weeding.
  • Frost Control – Get ready with frost cloth or newspaper to throw over citrus and other tender plants, when the night temperature is down at zero. Spraying with a liquid frost cover is recommended.

The Lawn

  • With your autumn renovation done and winter just around the corner it is time to get your lawn strong and healthy before the cold weather sets in.
  • Fertilise – with Prolawn Garden Supreme to give your lawn a helping hand to battle the winter conditions. By applying Garden Supreme you will be strengthening your lawn to protect it against the cold and wet weather.
  • Mowing – make sure your mower has sharp blades to get the best appearance you can when grasses are under stress. Although growth starts to slow at this time of year it still pays to be vigilant and try to mow your lawn at least once a week.

Our Central Landscape & Garden Supplies Yards are open every day for all your Garden Projects. Come and see us for great advice and service! Don’t forget our great home delivery service or borrow our free loan trailers!

Call us on 0800 005444

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