July is a great month to prepare your soil for planting vegetable and flower plants in Spring. Winter planting continues as many seasonal favourites like roses, fruit trees and camellias become available in store.

Flower garden

New season’s rhododendrons, camellias, hellebores and daphne are in store ready for winter planting so they can get established in the cooler months.

For instant winter colour, plant your favourite seedlings like pansies, sweet pea, stock, lobelia, cineraria and dianthus directly into your garden.

Feed spring bulbs in your garden with a side dressing of Tui Bulb Food (although not recommended for bulbs planted in pots). Feed bulbs in pots with their flower heads showing with Miracle Grow Max Feed All Purpose.

Plant new trees and shrubs, adding Tui Nova Tec Premium Fertiliser and generous quantities of compost to the planting hole.

Towards the end of the month, plant gladioli, tuberous begonias, dahlias, lilies and calla lilies for summer flowering. Prepare the ground by adding Palmers General Garden Fertiliser. Gladioli will flower approximately 100 days after planting.

For spring colour, sow your favourite seeds like delphinium, forget me not, larkspur, primula, salvia, snapdragon and wallflower in seed trays with Tui Seed Raising Mix.

Cut back untidy growth of perennial plants like lavender, canna lilies, agapanthus, fuchsia and geraniums.

Edible Garden

Now is the time to plant strawberries – getting them in early will not only give you more fruit but you will get fruit earlier too. Add a clean layer of pea straw mulch around the plants to deter pests and to keep the berries up off the dirt. Allow for five plants per person to ensure their is enough delicious fruit for everyone at harvest time.

Plant new season’s fruit trees; apples, pears, plums, peaches, apricots and nectarines, plus a wide range of citrus trees are in store now. Use a long term fertiliser like Nova Tec Premium Fertiliser or Tui Fruit Food when planting.

Plant seedlings of artichoke, cauliflower, lettuce, onions, potatoes, rhubarb, silverbeet and cabbage directly into your garden. The use of protective cloches (plastic tunnel or dome) will allow you to plant earlier and encourage vigorous growth.

Sow seeds of your favourite veges like broccoli, cabbage, broad beans, onions, spinach, silverbeet, in seed trays in a warm spot. Transplant to your garden in 6 – 8 weeks, or once they are approximately 4 cm high. In warmer
districts you can also sow carrots, parsnips and beetroot.

Plant garlic, elephant garlic and shallots bulbs along with asparagus crowns. For best results plant in well-draining soil rich in organic matter (compost).

Prune your deciduous fruit trees now. Ensure your cutting tools are sharp and clean and protect cuts with a pruning paste.

Roses

New season’s roses are in store now. Get your favourite classic varieties or choose from a range of new and exciting releases.

To ensure beautiful blooms come spring protect by spraying with Free Flo Copper, or the easy to use Yates Rose Gun. These sprays guard against scale, mites, aphids, and fungal diseases.

Your existing roses will now need a good prune. Ensuring your cutting tools are sharp and clean; cut out any dead, diseased or damaged branches.