Here we are, autumn already!! The shorter daylight hours and generally cooler night and morning temperatures are all signaling the shift in season not only to us, but to our plants as well. In this climate of comparatively mild winters and hot dry summers, the harshest and most stressful time of year for our plants tends to be summer (as opposed to winter in colder climates). This makes autumn an ideal time for planting many things, it gives them a period of warmth to establish early growth and, most importantly, three seasons (autumn, winter and spring), in which to establish a strong healthy root system to help them withstand the next summer.
You’ll notice a lot of things in the garden put on a growth spurt at this time, and a flush of flowering (especially roses), before the slow down over winter. Many natives in particular heave a sigh of relief and get ready for flowering, which a great many of them do across autumn, winter and spring.
Time to get busy in the garden then!
New season seedlings of annual flowers and vegetables are coming into stock now, it is a great time for planting lettuce (time for it to crop before it gets too cold), Asian greens, and of course broccoli, cabbage, kale amongst others, for all those coriander lovers, it is the best time for planting it now. White cabbage moth butterfly is still around and they love brassicas so be vigilant!
On that note, we have some wonderful solar (or battery powered) butterflies in stock, they are lovely little garden ornaments, but the white one looks and behaves exactly like the white cabbage moth, because they are territorial, having one of these next to your cabbage plants keeps the real ones away!
It is garlic time as well (plant by the shortest day, harvest by the longest day). We have stocks of some wonderful locally grown, chemical free garlic all ready to pop in the ground.
All of those lovely cottage perennials that you want to have flowering in spring and early summer, need to go in now too.
It is a good time to give your existing plants a little organic based fertiliser to support growth spurts and, sustain the roots through winter.