Labour weekend is the traditional time Kiwi’s roll up their sleeves and get stuck into their garden after letting things go a bit over winter. By late October the soil is warm enough to start planting summer seedlings and after months of drizzly weather, we’re usually itching to get outside.
Whether you’re going for a garden makeover, or just tidying up the edges, there’s always something to be done! Here are some gardening projects to keep you busy this long (and hopefully sunny!) Labour Weekend:
Time for Tasty Tomatoes
If you’re anything like us, you’ll be desperate to get your tomato seedlings into the soil! Planting tomatoes makes it feel as though summer really is on the way. We recommend planting tomato seedlings about 40cm apart and staking at the time of planting to minimise root damage.
Tomatoes love full sun so plant them in a protected, warm area. They will grow rapidly so remember to water them regularly and feed with a tomato fertiliser such as Tom-A-Rite. Small seedlings can be at risk of damage from birds, cats, slugs and snails so cover with bird netting and lay some snail bait around the base of the plants. For more information on growing tomatoes check out our how to grow tomato guide here.
Refresh your Pots and Containers
Now is a great time to refresh both the soil and plants in your pots and containers. Tip old soil into the compost heap and fill the pots with a new potting or container mix. Our stores are brimming with new seasons colour such as petunias, begonias, calibrachoas, bacopas, tropical impatiens and loads more! These flowers will all happily grow in pots and hanging baskets and bring an instant pop of colour to your decks and patios. As the weather warms up, it is important to water your pots regularly and we recommend adding water storage crystals to help maintain moist soil.
Get the Lawn Mower Out
Though mowing lawns may not be the most exciting task, it can make a huge difference to the look of your garden. This weekend, dust off the mower, put the catchment tray on and get busy! Instantly your garden will look tidy and refreshed, and you can put aside the clippings and use them for mulch later on. For more tips on how to grow a healthy lawn, click here.
Weed! Weed! Weed!
Again, definitely not the most exciting of gardening tasks but a necessity. Like mowing, a bit of weeding in the garden can make the biggest difference. Over winter weeds may have crept and climbed their way through your garden and fences so get your gloves, grab the secateurs and get trimming. When finished, chuck your weeds and clippings onto your compost heap. To prevent weeds taking over again, try laying weed mat down and making holes where you can plant your shrubs and flowers.
Get Your Beans Climbing
Now is the perfect time to plant beans. They’re a great gardening task to try with kids as they are fast growing and can be eaten straight off the vine. Beans need trellis, a fence or obelisk to cling to as they like to climb. You can find a range of obelisks and climbing frames at your local Palmers store now. Beans love the sun so plant them in a warm area with maximum sunlight. They will benefit from well drained soil and some fertiliser and should reward you with a bumper crop.
Grow Your Own Salad Bowl
Now that the soil has warmed up a bit, most summer veges are happy to go into the garden. Now is the perfect time to plant cucumbers, capsicums, aubergine, carrots, lettuce, basil and coriander. Raised garden beds are a great way to grow your veges. You can position them close to your kitchen or patio for easy access and it’s easy to get loads of nutrients into the soil of a raised garden. We have a selection of kit set raised garden beds in store or build your own!