Vegetables to plant now are silverbeet, celery, leeks, cauliflowers, swedes, lettuce, carrots and onions. Sow seeds of baby spinach. These can be grown in a pot and harvested when tiny.
Flower seedlings that can be planted include alyssum, calendula, carnation, delphinium, foxgloves, Russell lupines, lobelia, stocks, snapdragons, primulas, sweet peas, pansies and violas.
New season berry fruits are now in nurseries and garden centres. Berries like a reasonably good, open, well-drained soil. Any manure or complete fertiliser dug into the soil helps to produce heavy crops.
Plant red, white and black currants, youngberries, loganberries, boysenberries, raspberries, gooseberries, tayberries, Kiwi fruit, strawberries, rhubarb and asparagus.
Composted animal manures provide food for plants as well as humus-forming organic materials that help build soil structure.
Composted or aged manures are safer to use around plants as fresh manures can burn them. For this reason composted manures are best forked into the topsoil.
Stable manure is very concentrated and a valuable fertiliser for it not only supplies the three principal food elements of plants but also is the richest of all animal manure in humus value. Low in superphosphate though.
Poultry manure must be dried properly and can have some superphosphate added to make up for the loss of nitrogen and increase the phosphate content.
Add potash at the rate of one part potash to 12 parts by weight of dried manure.
Pigeon manure is the richest manure of all with four times more potash and nitrogen than poultry manure.
The phosphorus too is doubled making it ideal as a compost activator.
Sheep manure makes a good mulch as the rain breaks up the sheep pellets and washes the nutrients into the soil.
Goat manure is perhaps the best general purpose manure because goats feed on leaves, shrubs and grasses.
Blood and bonemeal, an animal by-product, is a good general purpose fertiliser that suits most plants including natives.
Citrus pruning can be carried out as the weather warms up. Lemon trees, if left unpruned, can grow straggly and a little dense.
Long, arching laterals can be shortened to an upward-facing bud aiming for as compact a growth as possible.
When choosing flower colours these botanical names are a guide. For example, albus/white; aureus/golden; caeruleus/blue; citrinus/lemon; luteus/yellow; niger/black; purpureus/purple; roseus/pink; ruber/red and viridis/green.
The plant’s flowering season may be seen as vernus/spring; aestivalis/summer; autumalis/autumn and hiemalis/winter.