Winter is officially here, which means cold, wet days ahead.
Here's some helpful tips from our in-house horticulturalists on what to do in the garden over winter.
- Sunshine – Ensure your vegetable garden is situated in full sun over winter to maximise your crops.
- Leafy greens – Winter is a great time to grow some green leafy vegetables that don’t like the warmer months. Try spinach and lettuce, and for something a little different collard greens. Collard greens are a part of the cabbage and broccoli family, but instead of eating the flower you eat the leaves. You may need to hunt around for this vegetable or try online.
Cabbage, broccoli and kale all enjoy the cooler months and like similar conditions. You may like to cover your plants with a net to prevent cabbage white butterflies from laying eggs on your plants as caterpillars can reduce your crop. These crops like a very fertile soil, so be sure to add plenty of compost and rotted manure before you plant.
- Carrots – Kids love growing and pulling up the carrots when they are ready. Be sure that your soil is nice and loose with not too many clods or rocks as this can cause your carrots to distort. That said, these weird and wonderful veggies can be great fun too. Also, avoid very fertile soil high in nitrogen as you may grow lovely lush leaves only to be disappointed with tiny carrots.
- Beetroot – Beetroot is nutritious and easy to grow. Not only can you eat the ‘beetroot,’ but the young leaves are also great in salads.
- Spring onions – Another easy-to-grow vegetable and so useful in an array of dishes.
- Coriander – You might think that because coriander is eaten by so many people in warmer climates that it needs warm weather to grow. This is not true and it will tend to go to seed very quickly with too much heat. Coriander will grow quite happily during winter and even with some shade. Let it go to seed in spring and summer and you will have coriander popping up in your garden the following year.
- Prune – Winter is a good time to prune your apples, pears and plums. Other stone fruit, such as nectarines, apricots and peaches, are best left for pruning until just after they have finished fruiting in summer.
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