Winter is certainly here. Despite the cold and damp, I find spending time in winter’s garden very enjoyable. It’s a chance to see the garden’s bones and imagine what spring and summer will bring – a perfect time to salivate over seed catalogues, plan plantings, transplant deciduous plants, move things, train and prune for structure, dig up new beds, build things and create, and get warm in the process.
And weed, especially if you are growing garlic and other crops which don’t compete well with other plants. Come the wamer months, you’ll be glad you did because over winter garlic bulbs set their cloves and growing conditions (moisture, competition, etc) will determine the number. Come spring, plants will use their photosythetic energies to fill the cloves. So to grow great garlic, you need to maximise the potential in both winter (clove number) and spring (clove size).
Other jobs in the garden include strawberry care – pruning second year runners or planting new season ones, ditto your berry canes and also grapes. Another BD spray this month won’t go astray either.
And planting? More broad beans, onions of all types, leafy greens, perhaps some peas if you’re sure they won’t be flowering when there’s still frosts about, and not too late to improve soil or create new garden beds with an initial green manure, using cereals (wheat, oats, barley, spelt) and legumes (peas, broadies, lentils, chickpeas, fava beans) and a scattering of mustard seeds.
Gardening Dates for temperate areas of SE Australia:
Leaf Days: 1-3, 9-11, 19-21, 28-30: bok choi, cabbage, kale, celery, coriander, endive, mibuna, mizuna, orach, rocket, tat soi, leek, lettuce, mustard, silverbeet, chard, spinach, chives, garlic chives, dill, parsley
Fruit Days: 3-5, 11-14, 21-23, 30-31: broad beans, mustard, peas,
Root Days: 5-7, 14-17, 23-26: Beetroot, carrots, celeriac, kohlrabi, garlic, garlic chives, leek, bunching onion, onion, radish, daikon, swede, turnip,
Flower Days: 7-9, 17-19, 26-28: broccoli, borage, cauliflower,
Moon Opposite Saturn (considered a good date for sowing seeds, applying preps and planting, or 48hrs either side): 8
Node Days (avoid planting if you can): 1, 15, 28
Apogee (moon furthest from earth; less lunar influence):14
Perigee (moon clostest to eath; more lunar influence): 2, 29
New Moon/Full Moon: 19/4
Moon descending: 2-16, 30-31
Moon ascending: 16-30
Apply soil fertilisers, compost: 5-16
Prune, apply tree paste, take cuttings, plant seedlings: 5-7, 14-17, 9-11
Apply foliar fertilisers: 1-2, 20-30
Graft: 17-19, 26-28
Dates are a guide for these particular crops. Timing will vary from region to region (particularly with climate change) and even within a garden’s own microclimates. Of course, rainfall, weather conditions and your own schedule will influence when you garden.