Your September Gardening Guide
It’s September… and that means it’s time to spring into action!
September is Arbor Month. Visit Lifestyle Home Garden to choose from a large selection of indigenous and exotic trees for big and small gardens. Look out for the Trees of the Year, i.e. Podocarpus spp (Yellowwoods) and Boscia albitrunca (Shepherd’s Tree).
You can click |HERE| to learn more about the trees of the year and where Arbor Week originated from.
General September Garden Tasks
Now is the time to feed the whole garden with an organic fertiliser like 3:1:5 or 2:3:2. Add a generous layer of compost – it will improve the condition of the soil and act as mulch.
September tends to be very hot and dry, so watering will need to be increased, always adhering to water restrictions. Be water wise and spread a layer of mulch around plants or grow a waterwise groundcover in all beds and borders to retain moisture, suppress weed growth and keep plants’ roots cool.
Prune winter flowering shrubs and hedges that have finished flowering. Pinch out growth tips to encourage branching. Frost sensitive shrubs that flower after mid-summer on the new season’s growth can also be pruned when all danger of frost is over.
Fertilise rose bushes with a balanced rose fertiliser, like Ludwig’s Vigorosa and increase watering to twice a week (approximately 10 litres per week).
Perennials and ornamental grasses that have finished flowering can be divided and transplanted now.
Clivias are our number one shade-loving, water saving, indigenous perennials – plant them now. Plant en masse in the dappled shade of a tree or to brighten up a dull corner. They can also be planted in pots on a shady patio. Plant in well-draining soil and water regularly during the warm months.
Check Clivias and other lily-like plants (e.g. Agapanthus and Amaryllis) for lily borers (a stripy black and yellow caterpillar). Pick them off manually and squash or spray with a pesticide the moment you see traces of them.
Aphids just love all that new, soft growth on roses, citrus, seedlings and other plants. Check the undersides of leaves and spray fortnightly with and organic insecticide to get rid of these little suckers.
Beautiful summer bulbs like Zantedeschia, Eucomis, Gladioli, Sandersonia, Gloriosa Lily and Amaryllis (to name but a few) are available now and Dahlia bulbs will be in towards the middle of September. Plant in well prepared beds. Remember to feed bulbs that have finished flowering with a specially formulated bulb food or 3:1:5 fertiliser to provide essential nutrients for next season.
Scarify and aerate your lawn to allow easier penetration of air, water and fertilisers. Cover with a fine layer of lawn dressing to stimulate new growth and improve the condition of the soil. Start feeding the lawn with a nitrogen-rich fertiliser, like Vita Green 5:1:5. Water well before and after application. Time to service your lawnmower and sharpen or replace the blades.
Weed the garden regularly now and save yourself a lot of trouble later in the year.
This is the ideal time to clean water features and ponds after the dusty winds of August. If necessary, aquatic plants can be divided and replanted now.
Remove the old potting soil around all your contained plants up to root level and fill up with fresh soil or replant into larger containers where necessary.
In the Food Garden
Remove the last of the spent winter veg and prepare beds, containers and hanging baskets for your summer vegetable and herb garden. Add compost, an organic fertiliser and bone meal to the soil.
Sow or plant beans, beetroot, radishes, carrots, spinach, Swiss Chard and lettuce now and tomatoes, sweet peppers, chillies, cucurbits, maize and brinjals when all danger of frost has passed. Water seedlings daily and feed with a suitable organic fertiliser every fortnight.
Seed potatoes are available for planting now. Plant either in prepared beds or the nifty potato bags and pots for sale in store.
Fruit trees must be protected against fruit fly by either spraying or putting out bait in traps. The ideal time to do this is at 75% blossom drop. Continue spraying fortnightly. It’s also a good time to plant new fruit trees – Lifestyle stocks a wide range of all sorts of fruit trees and berries – make your pick!
Spoil yourself to some strawberry plants available now. Plant in beds, pots or hanging baskets.
At Lifestyle Home Garden – beautiful and ready to be planted now…
Nothing shouts “Spring!” like these perennials in full flower: Scabiosa, Felicia, Argyranthemum, Salvia, Pelargoniums, Osteospermum and Aquilegia.
On the bedding tables for your beds, borders, pots and baskets you can choose your favourites from: Impatiens, New Guinea Impatiens, Begonias, Chrysanthemum, Marigolds, Gazanias, Petunias, Celosia, Salvia, Verbena, Snapdragons, Lobelia and Alyssum.
Visit us to find all your Spring gardening necessities and faves in full flower in the nursery now!
A happy, snappy Spring to you all!