Prime time to restore or exchange garden

Dichondra repens… a local that doesn’t want any mowing. Photograph: Jackie Warburton

Autumn is the perfect time of the 12 months to sow, restore or exchange a garden in Canberra, says gardening author JACKIE WARBURTON.

SOWING seed is a less expensive choice than laying turf and quick institution of the seed is important to get the turf to develop within the shortest time, stopping weeds moving into the soil and inflicting erosion. 

Jackie Warburton.

For a very good garden base, flip the soil to a 100mm-200mm depth and add turf soil or compost from the panorama suppliers. Add sand if there’s already good fertility within the soil. 

The soil have to be clear, flat and freed from particles resembling bark and rocks to make sure there’s good aeration for deep root progress. 

At this stage, superphosphate fertiliser can be utilized to extend the strike charge of the seed and to stimulate root progress, however total the germination of the seed is decided by the environmental circumstances, temperature and seed viability. 

Understanding if you wish to develop cool-season grass or warm-season grass will decide the right preparations. 

Cool-season grasses are fescues, blue grasses or rye and warm-season grasses are couches, kikuyus and buffalo. 

They each have benefits and drawbacks and components of shade, visitors and moisture necessities must be thought of when choosing the proper turf for the proper spot. 

If you wish to attempt native grasses, the place water is minimal and foot visitors is mild, I like to recommend weeping grass, wallaby grass or kangaroo grass or a mix of all of them. 

As soon as any of those grasses are established the mowing is just required twice a 12 months on the most, however a local that doesn’t want any mowing is dichondra repens

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This plant is a quick grower and gives a thick matting of roots and leaves that’s straightforward to stroll over. In some gardens it’s thought of weedy, however as a full garden or round paving, it may possibly seem like an efficient, evergreen floor cowl.

Cabbage… final likelihood to get them into the bottom for winter progress. Photograph: Jackie Warburton

NOW is the final likelihood to get cabbages into the bottom and have them rising by way of the winter. There are a lot of differing kinds to develop, resembling inexperienced/crimson, savoy, bok choy, Napa, kale and, after all, the ever-so-delicious brussels sprout.

It wants plenty of compost and must develop quick. Cabbage has a excessive pH of round 6.5 -7.5, so including lime to the soil just a few weeks earlier than planting will get it off to a very good begin. 

Planting companion crops resembling rosemary, sage or geraniums and the herbs will confuse cabbage moths. 

Don’t develop cabbage close to strawberries or they each will develop poorly. Cabbage wants frost to develop quick. Plant in and round different crops within the backyard mattress and never in a neat row, the place the cabbage butterfly will see them. 

The added benefit of rising brassicas by way of the winter is that the chilly climate retains the cabbage white butterflies away. 

One other various is to plant a decoy plant resembling kale and the butterfly will lay its eggs the place it eats, and the cabbage will likely be left alone. 

Decide cabbage simply as you see it elongate and simply earlier than it grows into the subsequent stage to seed (this occurs because the soil temperature warms up in early spring). 

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For those who do see some caterpillars, Diapel can be utilized to interrupt their breeding cycle or sprinkle diatomaceous earth when the seedlings are younger. 

Cabbage is among the most versatile greens within the kitchen and it additionally has an extended storage lifetime of any leaf crop. 


  • Plant seedlings of peas, lettuce, garlic and onions.
  • Pull out all sunflowers and spring annuals. 
  • Prune crepe myrtles as soon as the leaves have fallen. 
  • Spray stone fruit with copper for shot gap, fruit rot and leaf curl.


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Ian Meikle, editor